A pregnant teenager was fatally injured on Tuesday night after she was repeatedly shot in a Chicago neighborhood, according to local media reports, which said her unborn child miraculously survived the attack.
Police identified the victim as 17-year-old Charinez Jefferson, who was walking through the Marquette Park area with a male companion and several other people when someone opened fire. An unknown man exited a vehicle and began shooting at the group at about 10:35 p.m. and hit Jefferson - who was six months pregnant - at least three times in the heart, once in the foot and once in the back of the head.
Jefferson's companions scattered when the attack began and returned to find the teen lying wounded on the pavement, according to reports.
Paramedics found Jefferson in full cardiac arrest and performed life support treatment as they transported her to Advocate Christ Medical Center, where she was pronounced dead at 11:11 p.m. Doctors were able to deliver Jefferson's baby boy, whom sources report lost some oxygen during the ordeal and may experience additional health issues as a result.
On Wednesday morning, a fire department spokesman told the Chicago Sun-Times that the baby was in stable condition.
The baby was Jefferson's second child. She had her now 16-month old son, who was not named, when she was 16.
The victim's mother, Debbie Jefferson, told the Chicago Tribune that her daughter was walking to the corner store on the night of her death.
"I really don't know what happened," Jefferson said. "She stopped to talk to a guy she knew and someone drove up and opened fire. That's what I've been told."
Police said no arrests have been made in connection with Jefferson's murder, and added that they do not know if the victim was the shooter's intended target. However, her mother believes the explanation for her death is much simpler.
"She was in the wrong place at the wrong time," she said.