Chicago Police arrested and charged two gang members for unlawful possession of a firearm by a street gang member in two separate cases. The charges stem from a law signed by Governor Quinn back in December 2009.
The law, named in honor of fallen Officer Alejandro Valadez, is meant to stiffen the penalty for gang members arrested while carrying a firearm. Officer Alejandro Valadez was fatally shot in June 2009 while he and his partner investigated a call of gun shots fired in Englewood.
Juan Villarreal, 17, of the 2700 Block of West 24th Pl was charged with unlawful possession of a firearm in a vehicle by a gang member, No Valid F.O.I.D. card, possession of ammunition without a valid F.O.I.D. Card, driving on a suspended license, operating a motor vehicle without insurance, and driving a vehicle without wearing a seatbelt.
Officers initially stopped Villareal as he drove a vehicle near the 2700 Block of West 24th St. without wearing a seatbelt. Villarreal was unable to provide a drivers license or proof of insurance. Officers placed Villareal in custody and learned he was carrying a handgun.
In a separate case, Johnathan Rico, 17, of the 3200 block of W. 23rd St. was charged with aggravated unlawful use of a loaded gun, No valid F.O.I.D. card, unlawful possession of an unregisterable firearm, and unlawful possession of a firearm by a gang member.
Officers were patrolling near the 2100 block of S. Trumbull Av. when they observed Rico riding his bike on the sidewalk. As the officers approached Rico, they observed him remove a handgun from his waistband and toss it to the ground. Officers placed Rico into custody and recovered the weapon.