Roosevelt J. Yarber, of the 4100 block of West Van Buren Street, was stopped a little after 11 a.m. outside a funeral at the Miracle Temple Church, 4645 W. Madison St., and found to have a gun on him, according to police. Yarber was carrying a .44-caliber Magnum handgun with six live rounds when he was arrested, Area North Deputy Chief John Escalante said in a news conference this evening. Yarber has been charged with felony unlawful use of a weapon, police said.
"It just highlights the need for us to be out, monitoring these wakes and funerals,” Escalante said.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Wednesday said police would be showing up in force at gang funerals in Chicago, following the slaying of one man and the wounding of another outside at a funeral at St. Columbanus Church on the South Side last week.
Police said the funeral was for a member of the Gangster Disciples Yarber and some seen entering and leaving the church around 11 a.m. were not believed to be members of that gang, police said. Yarber was with six others, five of them members of the Four Corner Hustlers and one a member of the New Breed gang, which is in a gang conflict with the Gangster Disciples, police said.
Police stopped the seven because they were not believed to be GDs, and found Yarber was carrying a gun, arresting him in the 100 block of South Kilpatrick Avenue, which is around the corner from the church.
Information on the person for whom the funeral was being held was not immediately available. Police said Yarber did not have previous documented gang ties.
Escalante added that officers assigned to monitor the same funeral made an arrest Friday night at the church. The man, whose information was not immediately available, was seen acting suspiciously near the church and officers found him to have an outstanding arrest warrant for criminal trespass to a residence, Escalante said.
In all, Escalante said at least four people have been arrested since police began implementing the new strategy.
"We do see the potential for violence at these gang wakes and funerals," Escalante said. "Everyone has a right to attend a funeral or a wake, especially one at a church, and not expect to be the victim of gun violence."
Yarber was scheduled to appear in Cook County Bond Court on Sunday.
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