Tuesday, January 23, 2018 || By Local News Curator || @maywoodnews
A man who had been in custody on first-degree murder and attempted armed robbery charges related to the death of Maywood community leader and Cook County Sheriff’s Investigator Cuauhtemoc “Temo” Estrada on Dec. 20, 2013 has been convicted.
According to a report published Jan. 23 in the Chicago Sun-Times, it took jurors no more than six hours on Tuesday to determine that Brandon Jackson was guilty of the crime.
What helped convict Jackson, the Sun-Times reported, were “repeated phone calls from Piatt County Jail in downstate Monticello — including one to his father asking him to retrieve the alleged murder weapon.”
Estrada, 50, was hosting a family holiday party at a Bellwood VFW hall in the 200 block of 30th Avenue when his daughter and her boyfriend, who were carrying food into the facility, were approached by two armed robbers in ski masks and hoodies.
Estrada, upon walking outside, saw the robbery in progress and reached to draw his gun. The robbers shot him in the chest. He was rushed to Loyola University Medical Center in Maywood, where he died less than an hour later.
According to the Jan. 23 Sun-Times report, two masked gunmen were shown on video surveillance shot from the VFW parking lot.
Cook County Sheriff’s Investigator Cuauhtemoc “Temo” Estrada, who was murdered in 2013.
One of the men had on a maroon hoodie, which investigators would eventually retrieve from the basement in Jackson’s grandmother’s house, the Sun-Times reported. The hoodie, the Sun-Times adds, had traces of gunshot residue on one of its cuffs.
The Sun-Times also reported that investigators “also found the box for the alleged murder weapon — a .44 caliber Virginian dragoon — in Jackson’s grandmother’s house, prosecutors say.”
In 2006, Gage Thornton pleaded guilty to a single count of murder in connection to Estrada’s death. Thornton faces 35 years in prison. His formal sentencing date is Feb. 22 while Jackson’s pre-sentencing hearing is set for Feb. 21, the Sun-Times reports.
Estrada, a 20-year veteran with the Sheriff’s department, was widely known throughout Maywood and the surrounding Western Suburbs as an active member of his community. He was the founder of the popular Azteca Festival that was held in Maywood for several years.
According to a Chicago Tribune report published at the time of Estrada’s death, Sheriff Tom Dart said that the Maywood community leader “was well known with his family as being the person who planned the parties, executed the parties. He was very meticulous about it and loved doing it … For family events he was the guy. There’s nothing about this that isn’t heartbreaking.” VFP
To read the full Chicago Sun-Times report on Jackson’s guilty verdict, click here.
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