Testimony is scheduled to begin today in the trial of Demetrius Warren, accused in the slaying of Amadou Cisse, a Sengalese graduate student at the University of Chicago who was fatally shot in the early morning hours of Nov. 17, 2008, when he was walking home near the Hyde Park campus.
Earlier that night, Cisse had attended a small celebration in honor of his completing all the requirements necessary for him to earn a doctorate in chemistry.
Prosecutors allege Warren, then 17, shot Cisse once in the chest when he resisted a robbery. Two others defendants have already pleaded guilty and a fourth defendant awaits trial.
Police said Warren and the other three rode around that night in a car, armed with one gun and plans to rob college students of cash. The group planned to split their take, police said.
The suspects came up empty-handed in the attempted robbery of Cisse but robbed two female students and a male student in separate incidents. A male staff member was shot at as he ran away from the group, police said.
Before his arrest, Warren attended Alternative Learning Community High School, which serves students with behavioral and disciplinary issues, according to a Chicago Public Schools spokesman.
According to a court filing by prosecutors, Warren gave a videotaped statement to police in which he admitted riding in the car used in the crime spree.
He also acknowledged using a gun to take property from one of the victims and giving instructions to "co-offenders about stopping the car to do robberies," the filing said.
Cisse's family lives in Senegal, though a godmother may attend the trial.Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times