Chicago teen held without bail in last week's fatal shooting at Rosemont mall

  • Jose G. Matias

    Jose G. Matias

 
 
Updated 4/1/2022 6:24 PM

The 18-year-old charged with the deadly March 25 shooting at the Fashion Outlets of Chicago in Rosemont was ordered held without bail Friday.

Jose G. Matias, of Chicago, is charged with first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, aggravated discharge of a firearm and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon in the shooting, which was captured on surveillance video. If convicted of the most serious charge, he faces a minimum of 45 years in prison.

 

Prosecutors say Matias fired his weapon six times. Five bullets struck Joel Valdes, 20, of Skokie, who died from his injuries. At least one bullet struck a 15-year-old girl's wrist and grazed her leg. She was treated at a hospital and released, police said.

Cook County Judge Ellen Mandeltort issued the no-bail order, saying Matias "poses a real and present threat" to the safety of others.

According to prosecutors, Matias went with four other people to the mall, where they met three additional friends. At some point, they encountered Valdes -- who was wearing a ski mask, sunglasses and a crossbody bag -- and another person, said Assistant State's Attorney Robert Mack.

As Matias and his group walked past, Valdes stared at one of them and flashed gang signs, Mack said. A bit later, one of the people who accompanied Matias to the mall encountered Valdes at a kiosk and told him they were not gang members, Mack said.

At that point, Valdes "displayed a black handgun equipped with a flashlight and laser, pointed the gun at the group, activated the laser and set off the strobe function on the flashlight," Mack said. According to him, the flashing light is visible on mall surveillance video.

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Later, the person at whom Valdes stared and flashed gang signs and another person walked from the food court down a hallway to nearby restrooms, Mack said. Witnesses saw Valdes reach into his bag and walk toward the restroom, where he confronted the person he stared down earlier, Mack said.

The 15-year-old and her mother were in the hallway and saw Valdes confront the person, Mack said. He said the mother heard Valdes say something and saw him reaching into his bag. At the time, neither the mother nor her daughter saw Valdes with a gun in his hand, Mack said.

Mack said Matias was at the entrance to the hallway when the confrontation between Valdes and the other person occurred. Surveillance video shows Matias backing out of the hallway, turning and "pulling a handgun out, racking the slide, which ejected a live round," Mack said. He then turned back to the hallway and fired six times, Mack said.

Hearing several gunshots, the mother of the teen ran into the bathroom. The 15-year-old also heard gunshots and ran. Once safe, she realized she had been struck by a bullet, Mack said.

Mack said the surveillance video also shows people in the immediate vicinity and those individuals who walked down the hallway to the restroom. Witnesses identified Matias in surveillance video taken before, during and after the shooting, Mack said. Those identifications included photographs that show Matias firing a handgun at Valdes, Mack said.

Matias next appears in court on April 15.

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