September 28, 2020

Chicago FBI head hopes Operation Legend will bring justice for recently slain children

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CHICAGO – The head of the FBI in Chicago said agents with Operation Legend are hopeful their assistance will bring justice to the recent killings of children.

Last month, President Trump announced the operation that sent more than 200 federal agents to Chicago to help bring down violent crime.

FBI Special Agent in Charge Emmerson Buie said the agents will be in plain clothes and don’t look like the ones deployed to Portland after violent protests there.

Operation Legend is also targeting cities like Kansas City, Cleveland, Detroit, Milwaukee, Memphis and St. Louis. Here in Chicago, the focus is primarily on drug and gun trafficking and solving homicides, especially those involving children.

“We’re not coming in to do their job, we’re coming in to work with them and where we have overlapping and intersection working on investigations, that’s where we partner up and move forward,” Buie said.

Buie said his office is working on the recent slaying of 14-year-old Vernado Jones Jr. The teen was among a group of people watching 4th of July fireworks in Englewood when four unidentified men opened fire on the crowd in the 6100 block of South Carpenter.

On Friday night, members of Purpose Over Pain, a group of parents who have lost children to Chicago gun violence, spoke out at St. Sabina Church.

“We want to feel safe on 79th Street just like they want to feel safe on Rush Street,” Father Michael Pfleger said. “We want the same kind of respect, the same kind of resources on 79th Street as they give on Oak Street.”

The FBI is offering a reward of up to $25,000 for information leading to the “identification and arrest” of any suspects involved.

Anyone with information is asked to contact the FBI’s Chicago Field Office at (312) 421-6700, or the Chicago Police Department at (312) 747-8380.