Suit: Chicago State University could have prevented teen`s death - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Suit: Chicago State University could have prevented teen`s shooting death

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

The mother of a teen shot and killed outside Chicago State University after a basketball game last year is suing the college, its police chief and the Chicago Board of Education, claiming they could have prevented her son's death.

Pamela Wright Young filed the suit in Cook County Circuit Court Thursday, one year to the day after her 17-year-old son, Tyrone Lawson, was shot to death outside the university's gym after a high school basketball game between Morgan Park High School and Simeon Career Academy.

The suit names Chicago State University, CSU Police Chief Ronnie Watson, the Chicago Board of Education and Chicago Public Schools as defendants, claiming that they could have prevented Lawson's death.

The shooting happened after the game around 9:20 p.m. Jan. 16, 2013, near a parking lot outside the gym on the campus at 95th Street and King Drive, a Chicago Police source said at the time.

CPS routinely use CSU facilities as a "neutral setting" for student athletic events, according to a statement issued by Chicago State after the shooting.

Lawson, a Morgan Park student, met some friends at CSU to watch the game but was not able to get into the arena, which was filled to capacity, according to the suit. They remained on CSU property outside the gym during the game.

A fight broke out at the end of the game between two players from both teams, and other fights started outside the gym as people were escorted out and the crowd dispersed, according to the suit.

As the game was letting out, two men approached Lawson and his friends, and one of the men opened fire, according to the suit. Lawson and a friend ran in the direction of the back parking lot and CSU police department looking for safety, the suit claims.

Lawson was shot multiple times and taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, where he died at 9:51 p.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's office.

The lawsuit claims that there was no CSU security or police presence in the parking lot at the time of the shooting, and that security at the game failed to properly screen for weapons.

"Tyrone's mother thought he would be safe at a neutral location chosen for its security policies," Martin Dolan, attorney for Lawson's family, said in a statement. "That's why she let him attend, and that's why she's grieving the loss of her son today."

The 11-count suit charges CSU, CPS, the Chicago Board of Education and Watson with wrongful death and negligence and seeks more than $500,000 in damages.

Watson and representatives for CSU, CPS and the board of education could not immediately be reached for comment Thursday night.

Two brothers — Michael McNabb, 33, and Stephen Gilbert, 30 — were arrested and charged with first-degree murder in Lawson's death, prosecutors said.

Both men pleaded not guilty to the murder charge, and both are due back in court Feb. 10.

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