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Convicted Felon Out On Bond For Attempted Murder Arrested In Double Homicide Case

Chicago, IL – A convicted felon out on bond on an attempted murder charge fatally shot two men during a house party late last month, according to prosecutors.

Absalom Coakley, 29, was previously sentenced to two years in prison after being convicted of felony fleeing and eluding, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Coakley racked up another felony conviction due to a drug case in 2014 and was placed on probation, but that case remains “open and pending” due to his repeated probation violations, Assistant State’s Attorney Christopher Nugarus said.

He was also charged with attempted murder in 2016 for allegedly shooting a man during a robbery, CWB Chicago reported.

A 32-year-old man was critically wounded during the attack, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Despite his criminal history, his status on probation, and his alleged involvement in a near-fatal shooting, Coakley was released on just $15,000 bond, the Chicago Sun-Times.

Nugarus said Coakley was among approximately 50 people who attended a “video shoot party” at a residence located in the 1300-block of South Harding Avenue on Sept. 24.

A fight broke out in the kitchen area of the home in the early-morning hours of Sept. 25, during which Coakley allegedly shot 29-year-old Terrance Johnson in the back of his head, according to the prosecutor.

Investigators said the alleged gunman then headed outside, where he got into an argument with 30-year-old Terrance Young, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Coakley allegedly shot Young in the face, killing him, before he jumped into a nearby vehicle with two other individuals and fled the scene.

Johnson and Young both died from their injuries.

Nugarus said the second attack was captured by a nearby security camera, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Investigators also located security footage from a nearby gas station that showed Coakley wearing “distinct clothing” prior to the fatal shooting, the prosecutor said.

The suspect in the shooting video was wearing the same clothing, Nugarus told the Chicago Sun-Times.

A witness identified Coakley in a photo lineup as the gunman who killed Young, he added.

Investigators said other witnesses identified Coakley as the subject in both security videos, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Coakley was getting into a ride-share vehicle on West Ohio Street when a fugitive task force located him on Oct. 3 and placed him under arrest on charges of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon by a felon and two counts of first-degree murder, according to CWB Chicago.

He also allegedly had a .40-caliber handgun on him at the time of his arrest.

The weapon has been sent in for ballistics testing to see if it is the same gun used in the double homicide, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

A judge determined Coakley is a “clear and present danger to the community,” and ordered him to be held with out bail in all of his pending court matters, according to the news outlet.

Christopher Anderson, the public defender representing the convicted felon, said his client is a devoted father-of-four who plays piano at church and coaches football, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Anderson argued that his client may have shot Young and Johnson in self-defense or by accident, and further alleged Coakley might have been provoked or that the shootings could have been the result of a “mutual combat” situation.

But Nugarus pointed out that neither case seemed to fit any of those scenarios, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Young’s murder was captured on video, he noted, and Johnson was shot in the back of his head.

Coakley’s double homicide charges marked the 44th case so far this year in Chicago in which a person awaiting trial on another felony offense allegedly killed or attempted to kill another person, CWB Chicago reported.

Those 44 cases involve at least 82 victims – 21 of whom did not survive.

Written by
Holly Matkin

Holly is a former probation and parole officer who is married to a sheriff’s deputy. She is a regular contributor to Signature Montana magazine, and has written feature articles for Distinctly Montana magazine.

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Written by Holly Matkin


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