Lincolnwood police said they responded to a report of a man screaming for help at about 3:20 a.m. Tuesday when they found Grant Nelson, 34, of Wilmette with multiple stab wounds. Nelson told them he was a driver for the ride-sharing service Uber and that his passenger stabbed him, police said. He was dropping off the girl when the attack occurred, police said.
16-year-old ElizaWasni has been charged as an adult in the death of Grant Nelson
He managed to pull over his Hyundai and run to a nearby condominium building lobby, where he pushed buzzers and yelled, “Help me, help me. I’m going to die,” Assistant State’s Attorney Michelle Cunningham said.
Wasni took off in Nelson’s car but quickly struck a median and then ran off on foot, Cunningham said. She was found nearby wearing just a bra and leggings; a bloodstained Chicago Cubs shirt was found nearby, and a trail of blood led responding officers to the condominium lobby and then to the seriously injured Uber driver, Cunningham said. The suspect initially declined to make a statement, police said.
However, officers were able to use the Uber app on his phone to see that “Eliza” was the name of his most recent customer, the prosecutor said.
Nelson, described his attacker to police but died later at a nearby hospital, officials said.
Surveillance footage from Walmart showed Wasni walking around the store with a knife and machete and then leaving without paying for them, the prosecutor said.
She said Wasni had taken two earlier Uber rides the evening before, including one to Des Plaines and another from Des Plaines to Walmart. She was apparently in violation of the ride-sharing company’s terms and conditions, which say customers must be at least 18 years old.
Chicago-area TV stations reported that Nelson’s blood-splattered silver sedan remained in the intersection as police investigated his killing.
Officers located the girl, who prosecutors identified as Eliza Wasni, behind a building near the crime scene in possession of two weapons they believe she used in the stabbing.
Wasni allegedly, called Nelson a “random victim”.
Alexandra Nelson, sister of victim Grant Nelson, speaks to reporters May 31, 2017 after the court arraignment for her brother’s killer – hoping justice will be done.
Eliza Wasni, kept her eyes mostly to the floor Wednesday afternoon as a Cook County judge ordered her held without bail in the killing of Grant Nelson of Wilmette — an act prosecutors called “heinous” and “not provoked in any manner.”
Assistant State’s Attorney Michelle Cunningham told media how the victim ran to a nearby condo lobby, pushed buzzers and yelled, “Help me, help me. I’m going to die”
Wasni who has been charged as an adult with first-degree murder, spoke during the bond court hearing only to confirm her name. Her lawyer, a public defender, said the teen attends Taft High School in Chicago and lives with a single mother.
Judge Michael Hood ordered her to be held without bail and called the crime “extremely violent.”
The victim’s siblings and parents, were in the courtroom during the hearing. Family members sobbed at times during the proceedings as the prosecution described Grant Nelson pleading for help in the lobby before he was found on the ground outside in a pool of blood with multiple stab wounds on his right side.
Addressing the media outside court, Grant Nelson said his brother loved opera and classical piano and was a “very good” piano player, while their sister Alexandra Nelson, who called the attack on her brother “horrifying and maddening,” added that the family hopes “justice will happen.”
Alex Nelson, called her brother was a good person.
“He was not a vindictive person,” Alex Nelson said. “He was not a cruel person. He didn’t deserve this fate.”
Uber officials said the company was working with police to provide information relevant to the investigation.
“We are heartbroken by the loss of one of our partners, Grant Nelson” Uber said in a statement. “Our deepest sympathies and prayers are with his family and loved ones during this incredibly difficult time.”
It is the first homicide in Lincolnwood since 2006, police said.