CHICAGO — It’s been nearly a week since the son of a Chicago police officer was shot and killed in front of his family home on the far South Side and still there have been no arrests.
Neighbors went door-to-door offering a $10,000 reward for information in the case Thursday, as the family of 19-year-old Arshell “Trey” Dennis III opened up about his killing for the first time.
Dennis had come home to visit his sick mother, who is confined to a wheelchair, and was just hours away from returning to St. Johns in New York for his junior year of college. His grieving sister, Rachel Woods, says he was spending time with his mother just before the shooting.
“They were watching a movie together and he popped popcorn for her, and he hugged her and said, ‘I love you, mom,” Woods recalled. “He said, ‘I’ll be on the porch. If you need me, just call me.’”
Dennis was sitting on the porch with a friend when someone came up and opened fire. Investigators believe it may have been a case of mistaken identity, or a random gang initiation killing.
The son of a Chicago cop was gunned down on the steps of the family home.
“He was just a good person, he didn’t deserve this,” Woods said.
Father Michael Pfleger of Saint Sabina catholic parish led a group going door-to-door Thursday, handing out flyers offering the $10,000 reward for information leading to the killer’s arrest. An anonymous donor doubled the reward from $5,000 Thursday morning.
“We must use our strength as a community to punish people who shoot and kill, to put them in jail and make the streets safer,” Fr. Pfleger said.
Ald. Derrick Curtis said the group was going “one by one, resident by resident, block by block until we find the killers.”
Dennis’ sister remembered him as a young man passionate about poetry and excited about a career in journalism, but his first thought, she said, was always about their mother.
“He always worried about her before she was sick, and during her sickness. That was his main concern,” Woods said.
Today, the family spent time planning his funeral. The search for a suspect continues.