Evanston police are investigating the death of a 23-year-old Evanston man who they say was shot and killed in an alley in the 1700 block of Grey Avenue around 2 a.m. Tuesday morning.
Police responded to a call of shots fired in the 1800 block of Hovland Court, and found Javar Bamberg lying in the alleyway, according to a press release from the Evanston Police Department. Bamberg was shot in the head died at the scene, police said.
“The investigation at this time has shown that this is not a random act,” Evanston Police Cmdr. Jason Parrott said in the release. Parrott said investigators believe Bamberg was targeted as part of an ongoing feud between two extended families with ties to gang violence.
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Tuesday morning's shooting is the third shooting to take place in Evanston in less than two weeks. First on Thursday, Nov. 30, in the 1800 block of Brown Avenue. Police have said they believe the offenders in that incident could have ties to gang violence, although they say there are no indications that Murray himself was in a gang and believe he may not have been the intended target.
Another Evanston man was shot and seriously injured this past Saturday, Dec. 8, in the 1900 block of Howard Street. He remains in critical condition at St. Francis Hospital, according to Parrott. Police said they believe that shooting may be a retaliation for the death of Justin Murray, and that the victim was targeted by two shooters.
Investigators believe that Bamberg’s death, in turn, could be related to the shooting on Howard Street, according to Parrott. Parrott also said there are other incidents of violence related to Bamberg.
Javar Bamberg's brother, is John Anthony Bamberg, Jr., according to Parrott. A Cook County judge recently found John Anthony Bamberg, Jr., not guilty on charges of first-degree murder in the shooting of 23-year-old Marcus Davis in Evanston in 2010.
Evanston police detectives and the North Regional Major Crimes Task Force are investigating both recent homicides. Parrott said Monday that detectives have identified suspects in Murray’s shooting and the shooting on Howard Street, but do not have anyone in custody yet. Evanston police have also increased their presence in the neighborhoods where the incidents took place, according to Parrott.
Police are urging anyone with information regarding the most recent homicide to call the Evanston Police Department at 847-866-5000 or text the department anonymously by texting the keyword “EPDTIP” to the number 274637 (CRIMES) along with any information.
Editor's Note: This story has been updated to include information about Javar Bamberg's brother.