Five years after Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed in a Chicago park, Kenneth Williams, 25, was found guilty of first-degree murder for driving the getaway car the day Hadiya was killed.
Sitting inside a Chicago courtroom Wednesday (Aug. 22) Williams lowered his head when the verdict was read. Members of Hadiya’s family was emotional and cried, however, they declined to comment.
Hadiya was a high school sophomore and honor student who performed with her school’s marching band for Barack Obama’s second inaugural parade.
The case against Williams was circumstantial, yet it took a jury about three hours to return a guilty verdict. Williams, along with Mickiael Ward, both 18-years-old at the time, were accused of shooting into a crowd of teens at Harsh Park in Chicago’s Kenwood in January 2013 injuring two other teenagers and killing Hadiya. She was 15-years-old.
Williams and Ward’s trials were held simultaneously, but their defenses were different. Williams’ attorney argued there was no evidence connecting him as the getaway driver. Michael Beal, Williams’ Uncle believes his nephew guilty verdict was handed down due to a coerced witness.
“They ain’t got no evidence, so they found my nephew guilty for something he did not do,” Beal added. “They have no fingerprints. They ain’t got no gun, no pistol, no gun.”
At the time of the post, no date has been set for sentencing.