No Bail for Man Charged in Brazen ‘Execution’ of Woom Sing Tse in Chinatown

(WTTW News)(WTTW News)

Woom Sing Tse had just left his home in Chinatown to go buy a newspaper on a chilly Tuesday afternoon when he was “executed” in broad daylight by a suspect who fired nearly two dozen shots in three separate volleys at the 71-year-old grandfather, according to Cook County prosecutors.

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Alphonso Joyner, 23, was ordered held without bail during a court hearing Thursday following his arrest on charges including first-degree murder and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon stemming from the brazen shooting.

“Sometimes individuals just do evil things,” said Assistant State’s Attorney James Murphy, who was unable to provide a motive for Tse’s killing during the hearing. “That’s the situation that we have here.”

The shooting, which was captured on multiple surveillance cameras, occurred at around 12:30 p.m. Tuesday in the 200 block of West 23rd Place, just steps away from Haines Elementary school.

According to Murphy, Tse was walking eastbound on that street to get a paper when Joyner’s light blue Toyota sedan pulled through a nearby intersection and slowed down. Without warning, Joyner allegedly pointed a 9mm firearm with an extended magazine out of the driver’s side window and fired seven shots at Tse.

He then pulled forward slightly and fired six more rounds, according to Murphy, who said Tse can be seen on video covering his head and ears before his body “jerked” and he fell to the ground.

Tse could be heard on video yelling from the ground as Joyner allegedly parked his car in the opposite lane of traffic, got out and walked over to Tse, telling him “Hey, hey” before firing nine more shots at close range.

Murphy repeatedly described Joyner’s “calm” demeanor throughout the shooting and as he fled the scene in his vehicle.

Tse suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the left and right sides of his forehead, the top of his head, his right hip, the back of his neck and his right temple, according to Murphy, and was pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital.

Joyner’s car was captured by several Chicago police license plate readers both before and after the shooting, Murphy said, and he was located and apprehended in the car by himself on the Kennedy Expressway approximately 66 minutes after and 11 miles away from the shooting.

Eighteen fired 9mm shell casings were recovered from the scene, and Joyner is alleged to have fired 22 total shots. Police said Joyner tested positive for gunshot residue following his arrest and a firearm — described by Murphy as a “ghost gun” compiled from parts of other guns and lacking a serial number — recovered from his car was matched to those shell casings from the scene.

When he was arrested, Joyner also appeared to be wearing the same clothes as the person seen on video shooting Tse.

During the hearing, Joyner’s public defender Scott Kozicki argued that it was unclear how many people were inside the vehicle at the time of the shooting and asked that his client be placed on electronic monitoring.

Judge Maryam Ahmad, however, rejected that request and denied bail, saying she found “overwhelming” evidence that Joyner presentes a “real and present threat and danger to the community.”

“The court can say, in summary, this was an execution that the people described,” she said.

Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown on Wednesday evening credited the Chinatown community with acting quickly to help officers apprehend Joyner.

He said locals immediately contacted police after the shooting with information about the suspect and the Chinatown Chamber of Commerce provided investigators with surveillance footage of the incident.

“They helped us bring this offender to justice,” Brown said.

Joyner is due back in court for a hearing Dec. 29.

Contact Matt Masterson: @ByMattMasterson[email protected] | (773) 509-5431

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