LAKE FOREST — The shooting death of Shaft D. Wilson Jr. outside a Lake Forest home October 29 was gang related, according to Lake County Sheriff’s Police Sgt. Chris Covelli, a spokesperson for the Lake County Major Crimes Task Force.
Covelli told DailyNorthShore.com December 21 he believed the shooting was gang related after the task force identified more than two unnamed “persons of interest” nearly six weeks ago as reported in DailyNorthShore at that time.
“The evidence and interviews gathered thus far indicates this is a gang-related shooting,” said Covelli. “In addition, investigators have faced difficulties from some witnesses who are not cooperative, or have provided conflicting statements.”
Covelli said in a November 17 DNS story the names of the “persons of interest” were withheld because they have not been charged with a crime. He said the “persons of interest” and Wilson, 19, of North Chicago, were acquainted with each other.
The shooting occurred outside a home at 1359 West Estate Lane East where a Halloween costume party was taking place, DailyNorthShore.com reported on October 30. The party was promoted on several social media platforms.
The task force interviewed more than 100 witnesses in the investigation that has now been going on for nearly two months, according to information provided by the task force and reported on DNS.
“The people interviewed include party goers, witnesses and others with information on the shooting,” said Covelli at the time. “One of our challenges is some of the party goers are not cooperating with the investigation.”
In the course of the investigation, police conducted forensic examinations of DNA and ballistics at the crime laboratory, according to previous DNS reports. Covelli said in the November 17 story a firearm was recovered at the crime scene. The gun was tested for DNA and ballistics. Numerous shots were fired, but Covelli would be no more specific.
Between 150 and 200 people attended the party, which started Saturday, October 28. When gunfire broke out most of the guests started fleeing in various directions, according to residents who live in the area.