CHICAGO — A man fatally shot two teens after they asked how tall he was, police said.
Investigators said Laroy Battle, 19, shot the teens in an alley around 5 p.m. last Saturday, WLS reported.
Investigators said the teens and a friend of theirs did not know Battle, who is 6-foot-3, but had a brief interaction with him moments earlier at a convenience store when they asked how tall he was when they bought some candy at a convenience store, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
"The victims commented, because, since Battle is quite tall, and they asked him how tall he was and you know, hoped to be that tall someday," Deputy Chief of Detectives Brendan Deenihan said. "And unfortunately, obviously we'll never see the full growth of these poor children."
Battle followed them out and fired nine shots at the three teens as they walked home, striking two of them.
Jasean Francis, 17, was shot in the back, chest and left hand. He was taken to a hospital where he died, WLS reported. Charles Riley, 16, was shot in the back and left leg. He was taken to a hospital where he died. The third teen was not struck, the Sun-Times reported.
The boys had asked their mothers if they could go down the block to buy candy.
"He was nice to seniors on the block," Jasean's aunt Keena Hoyle told WLS. "The nurses looked forward to him coming over there daily. They brought over to the family roses. They watched him grow up as a child."
Battle was arrested Thursday and charged with two counts of first degree murder. He has previously been convicted of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. He was given 18 months probation in December 2019, WBBM reported.
Investigators were able to identify Battle from a tip. “To the community members who stepped forward with information - thank you,” Chicago police said on social media. “Detectives were able to quickly identify Battle, but it was the help we received from the community that led to his arrest.”