Teen shot to death by brother was Maine West student

Updated 5/24/2017 10:43 PM

The 15-year-old Des Plaines boy accidentally shot to death by his 10-year-old brother last weekend was a student and freshman basketball player at Maine West High School, where crisis counselors were made available to students and staff, officials said Wednesday.

The teen died Monday from injuries sustained in the shooting, which occurred just before 11 a.m. Saturday, police said.

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On Wednesday, Des Plaines Police Cmdr. Christopher Mierzwa wouldn't say whether police plan to charge anyone in connection with the shooting, but did say the shooting was an accident.

A Cook County medical examiner's office official said Wednesday an autopsy had not yet been performed.

Police said the 15-year-old boy was shot with an automatic handgun and sustained facial injuries. The victim was transported to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, where he succumb to those injuries.

Mierzwa said a neighbor notified police right away about the shooting.

Mierzwa declined to detail circumstances of the shooting, including how the 10-year-old came to obtain the gun.

The investigation remains open, he said.

"It's just a tragedy," Mierzwa said. "It's a very good family."

According to one of the boy's teammates, Maine West High School freshman Ivan Garay, the teenager was one to tackle a challenge head-on.


"I didn't know (him) that much outside of basketball, but what I can tell you is he was one of the hardest-working people you'll ever meet and he never backed down from any challenge."

Maine Township High School District 207 spokesman Dave Beery released a statement Wednesday extending "our deepest sorrow and condolences to the student's family and friends."

"Maine West High School is making crisis counselors available for students and staff throughout this difficult time, and we will offer support to each other as we try to cope with the loss of one of our students," Beery said.

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