Demetrius Griffin Jr. had sapphire eyes that held a seductive allure for anyone fortunate enough to come into contact with them. He perfectly captured the essence of a young boy. Just a fortnight before his tragic death, the high school hallways had welcomed him. Demetrius had made a name for himself in middle school as a jovial spirit, a maestro of amusement, and someone who delighted in the symphony of laughter. His defining characteristic was kindness, which set him apart from other kids his age.
Instead of focusing on building relationships and inspiring smiles on the faces of those he encountered, Demetrius Jr. avoided taunts and other forms of belittling behavior. His spirit was indomitably driven, and his intellect shone brilliantly. He was a luminary in the fields of science and mathematics. As he anticipated his first year of high school and nurtured aspirations to join the swim team, he was filled with excitement about starting the new chapter of his life.
Demetrius enforced a strict curfew with unwavering resolve. On September 16, a series of events took place in South Austin, Chicago, as Demetrius walked with a female companion. Their paths parted several blocks from his home. Curfew was missed, a stark departure from his routine, as dusk fell and the hours passed. His mother, Polly Skyes, recalled how this out-of-the-ordinary behavior immediately caused alarm, which was evidence of their close bond.
The Heartbreaking Death of Demetrius Jr.
Demetrius’ situation was so complicated that it took the medical examiner’s office almost a whole month to determine the cause and method of his untimely death. Demetrius’ tragic death was officially ruled a homicide, but the mystery of who caused it still lingers in the shadows. The memories of Demetrius’s family and friends are obscured by a perplexing mist because he had no negative or evil associations. On the contrary, his relatives attested to his steadfast love for the neighborhood by frequently offering assistance through the delivery of groceries and canine company. Those who held Demetrius closest cherished the idea that he was an embodiment of goodness and was not connected to any faction or organized criminal enterprise.
The family speculated that while Demetrius eluded a gang’s grasp, fate had somehow drawn him into their web. A tragic case of misidentification or a violent initiation rite may have materialized, compelling a potential adherent to harm an innocent person as a sign of loyalty. Alternative hypotheses include the concept of a hate crime and reflect the tragic story of Emmett Till, a young boy of 14 who was brutally mur*dered in the state of Mississippi.
The Demise of Demetrius Jr.
Some people think Demetrius died prematurely to sate sinister desires after becoming prey to a predator, being caught up in a sinister act of abduction and possible violation. Demetrius, a young boy, a son, and a devout member of the church, participated in the neighborhood boys and girls club and aspired to join the school’s swimming fraternity. He died suddenly, the cause of death unknown. Two years later, the investigation into who attacked Demetrius is still plagued by doubt, just as it was on the day it was launched.
It is crucial to remember that Demetrius was not the only victim in the city of Chicago to suffer the ignominious fate of being burned and thrown into a trash can. Theresa Bunn and Hazel Lewis both died of asphyxiation in 2007, both of whom were abandoned in burning dumpsters close to Washington Park after being stripped of their clothes and reduced to ashes.
Theresa Bunn, the first victim, was 21 years old, pregnant, and her body was doused in accelerant prior to the inferno consuming her life. In less than a day, the stage was graced by the presence of 52-year-old Hazel Lewis, whose life was extinguished in a similar way to that of her predecessor, the diligent firefighters tasked with dousing the ferocious blaze. Both women were of African descent, and their destinies were intertwined within the boundaries of Chicago’s South Side. They were victims of suffocation, conflagration, and desecration. The setting was witness to Monique Bond, the Chicago Police spokesperson, as she suggested that a single criminal might be a sign of more crimes to come.
Even after more than ten years have passed, the mysteries surrounding Theresa and Hazel remain unanswered, their tragic stories serving as a symbol of the unwavering desire for justice. A variety of other stories that detail similar deaths for people of all ages have emerged during this time. A somber list that brings back memories emerges:
- Dated: November 6, 2012 In a blazing crucible adorning the west alley of North Central Park Avenue, the embers embraced an unrecognizable form that had been reduced to cinders.
- May 20, 2013 – Amy Martinez, who was only 20 years old, had her life force extinguished. Her body was found in a dumpster on Chicago’s Northwest Side by the same flames that had obscured her form, and her story, like a dormant symphony, has never been fully resolved.
- April 1, 2013 – A charred silhouette, life given up inside a car tucked inside Irving Park’s boundaries.
- June 13, 2015 – A life consumed by flames, a charred vessel, and a poignant testament to fate’s whimsy were found in the center of the Brighton Park neighborhood.
- June 21, 2015 – On the southern outskirts of Calumet Park, a burned-out body was found nestled inside a trash can.
And now, as the story moves into 2016, Demetrius Griffin’s life comes to an end, a repeat of the same fate that had befallen others. The mystery is still unsolved, a tapestry of hopelessness and unanswered queries.