Category Archives: Crime

Update in Albany Park Arson Case

The January 31 fire which killed pregnant Rosanna Ocampo and her daughter, Itzel Fernandez, shocked Albany Park. It was not only the location of the fire (adjacent to Volta Elementary), but also the gang-related motives that has caused residents to be ill at ease.

However, this weekend residents received some positive news on the tragedy as 17-year-old Joran Djurdlov was arrested, charged and held without bond for his role as a lookout in the crime. A second suspect was questioned, but released, early Monday morning. Police are also investigating the tie between the arson and the recent shooting death of local teen gang member, Franco Avila.

Area residents are strongly encouraged to attend local beat meetings this month. These meetings give residents an opportunity to ask questions of and demand response from officers serving the local area. Find your beat and beat meeting now.


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Teen Killed at Ainslie and Lawndale

Last night, while most Albany Park residents wondered whether the Chicago River would again flood their basements, 17-year-old Franco Avila was shot and killed, presumably by a rival gang member. The Chicago Tribune reports that Avila, a Roosevelt High School student, was trying to leave the gang life. Unfortunately, he didn’t quite escape.

There have been several gang-related crimes in the neighborhood. Instead of hiding inside, these incidents are excellent reminders that residents need to get involved, get outside and get connected with local police and government officials. If you aren’t already attending your beat/CAPS meeting, you should.

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