By jeanne starmack
Five people were sitting on the porch of a home in the 100 block of Saranac Avenue during Wednesday’s warm afternoon.
The adults were smoking cigarettes and drinking pop; their kids were just getting home from school.
The homeowner was there, along with two of her three young daughters and two men, one of them, her nephew.
The other man was a friend who was visiting, and he was expecting a ride elsewhere.
That ride arrived. At 3:45 p.m., a man pulled into the driveway beside the North Side house.
What happened next occurred very fast, killing a man and shattering the ordinary afternoon, said the homeowner and her nephew, who did not want to be identified.
Another car stopped at the end of the driveway.
That car, a light blue Chevrolet four-door with a white top, carried two men, the homeowner said.
As she and her nephew sat on her porch and one of her school-age daughters perched on the porch railing and watched, the passenger in the blue car opened fire on the man in the first car.
The shooter emptied a clip, firing at least nine times. The homeowner’s other daughter pulled her sister off the rail.
The shooter didn’t appear to care how many people were around or where they were.
“They didn’t look for anybody here — they just opened fire,” the homeowner told The Vindicator a few hours later.
“We don’t know why,” she added, saying she knew nothing about the victim except that he was her friend’s ride. She did not know his name.
21 WFMJ-TV, The Vindicator’s broadcast partner, identified him as Pierre McKinney, who was in his early 20s.
McKinney got out of his car after the shooting and ran around the house to the backyard.
“And we thought he’d made it,” the homeowner said. “We found him alive in the backyard, and he was still alive — his girlfriend was able to get here and hold his hand and watch him take his last breath.”
“The guy was just killed right in front of us,” her nephew added. “There was nothing we could do.”
“He was somebody’s family — somebody’s father, son, brother, nephew,” said the homeowner, who’s now afraid for her own family.
A bullet from the shooting went through her house. The police told her, she said, that it was lucky her girls weren’t inside.
The blue car, she said, has been in the neighborhood “all the time.”
The shooting happened, she pointed out, at a time when kids were in the streets getting home from school.
She has lived in her home for two years, calling it “her dream house.” But now, she said, she’d leave all her possessions behind if someone offered her a bus ticket out.
She and her daughters will not stay there for the next few days, she said.
“Kids aren’t safe to go outside and play — during the day,” she said.
The shooting is the city’s ninth homicide this year. The previous slaying was March 14.