Huffpost Chicago

Joliet Restaurant Shooting: Murder Charges Sought After Man Shot At Breakfast Table In Front Of Family

Posted: Updated:
Christopher Leon Thompson, 31, of Joliet, has been charged with murder in a fatal Saturday restaurant shooting. (Will County Sheriff)
Christopher Leon Thompson, 31, of Joliet, has been charged with murder in a fatal Saturday restaurant shooting. (Will County Sheriff)

An alleged gunman has been charged with murder after police say he shot another man to death at point blank range in front of his wife and two children as the family ate breakfast at a Joliet restaurant roughly 40 miles southeast of Chicago.

Christopher Leon Thompson, 31, was charged Sunday with the murder of 29-year-old Gerardo Franchini. According to the Associated Press, investigators say Thompson walked into Louis' Family Restaurant Saturday morning and shot Franchini multiple times, killing him. No one else in the restaurant was injured.

A server at the restaurant who declined to be named described the chaotic scene to CBS Chicago.

“Screaming, ducking, people flipping tables and hiding under them," the server said, "Glass is breaking. I mean dishes everywhere, food everywhere. His little girls were crying and screaming, asking for their dad."

The popular restaurant was "packed" when the shooting occurred around 9:30 a.m. Saturday morning, according to the Sun-Times. Restaurant owner Louis Polimenakos told the paper Thompson and his girlfriend were at the front of the restaurant while Franchini ate in the back with his wife and two young daughters.

The two reportedly exchanged heated words prompting Thompson to leave and return just 10 or 15 minutes later alone, and armed. "(The suspect) went over to the table, leaned over and just unloaded, right in front of the kids," another unnamed server told the Tribune.

Thompson's motive is still unclear, though various reports indicate the two men both had troubled pasts that included run-ins with the law and drug charges.

In addition to the murder charge, Thompson faces two felony counts of use of a firearm by a felon and possession of a controlled substance with intent to deliver, according to NBC Chicago.

Also on HuffPost:

10 Major Crimes That Shocked the Nation (SLIDESHOW)
of
Share
Tweet
Advertisement
Share this
close
Current Slide

Suggest a correction

Around the Web

Joliet restaurant reopens day after shooting death - Chicago Tribune

Man charged in shooting death at Joliet restaurant - Chicago Tribune

Man Charged In Shooting Death At Joliet Restaurant « CBS Chicago

Arrest made in Joliet restaurant shooting | abc7chicago.com

Alleged Joliet restaurant shooter in court Monday | abc7chicago.com

Joliet man charged in restaurant shooting - Southern Illinoisan

Northwest Herald | Joliet man charged in restaurant shooting

Man charged in fatal shooting at Joliet restaurant - Chicago Sun-Times

Man shot dead in front of family in Joliet restaurant | WGN-TV

Man Dies after Being Shot at Joliet Restaurant: Police - in Joliet Patch

Joliet restaurant reopens day after shooting death

Man shot dead in front of family in Joliet restaurant

Customer shot and killed Saturday at busy Joliet restaurant

Joliet man fatally shot inside restaurant