Prosecutors for the Noble Square shooting have charged 18-year-old Tremell D. Neloms for first-degree murder, in the death of 15-year-old high school freshman, Caleb Westbrooks. Chicago police confirmed on Thursday that Neloms, who studied at Golder College Prep, a neighboring high school, was behind the killing of Westbrooks after he initially tried to rob him.
The incident took place on January 18 when Westbrooks was leaving Rauner College Prep at 12:15 p.m., walking towards Golder College to meet some friends. Neloms passed through Westbrooks and his friends while they were waiting outside the school for some other friends to arrive. After the friends arrived, the group started walking down Superior Street, and Neloms followed them.
He finally approached Westbrooks at the end of an alley, where after Westbrooks started probing him, he pulled out a gun. The confrontation took place at the 800 block of North Greenview Avenue. A few more questions passed between them before Neloms fired thrice and hit Westbrooks in his arm, chest, and abdomen, according to prosecutors.
After close to a month of an ongoing investigation on the Noble Square shooting Neloms was arrested by the Chicago Police Department and the Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force this Wednesday.
Garfield Park Gators coach Tim Hall said in a condolence statement after the shooting, “This was a kid that had dreams of going to college, playing football.” Neloms was first identified and caught at the 500-block of Forsythe Avenue in Calumet City.
CCTV footage from private cameras around where the Noble Square shooting took place and Golder College Prep itself, helped identify Neloms and trace his steps throughout the day. After arrest, he was held without bail until his charge.
Ahmani Paskel Dobine, a student at Rauner College Prep said at the vigil held for Westbrooks, “All day today at Rauner College Prep, everyone has been crying. It’s been emotional. He’s like our missing piece.”
Meanwhile, Westbrooks’s father Caleb called the arrest a “good news” but continued that it does not “bring Caleb back to me, his mother, his sister, his grandmother, uncles, cousins and scores of friends.”
Another student from his school, Jayden Strzelczyk, also addressed those gathered for the vigil saying, “He was literally the school joy. He never had a frown on his face; he was literally always smiling.”