Satan Disciples Member Beats Rival to Death After Being Placed In Same Cell

Christian Gonzalez, 24, allegedly beat Pedro Ruiz for 10 continuous minutes using a sock filled with bars of soap, prosecutors said.
Later that morning, Gonzalez, a reputed member of the rival Satan Disciples street gang, allegedly told a correctional officer that he beat Ruiz, 19, because he was a rival gang member, according to prosecutors.
Ruiz belonged to the Almighty Saints, which has long feuded with the Satan Disciples in the Back of the Yards community and neighboring areas, including during a spate of rifle shootings about three years ago.
Gonzalez was ordered held without bail by Judge Arthur Wesley Willis, who called him “a danger to everybody.”
Correctional officers in the jail’s Division 9 found Ruiz unresponsive in his cell with apparent head trauma about 1:55 a.m. Saturday and “immediately began lifesaving measures,” sheriff’s spokesman Joe Ryan said.
The Chicago Tribune reported earlier this week that Gonzalez and Ruiz were rival gang members who had been placed together Friday in a two-man cell.
Ruiz had been ordered held at the jail without bond Friday on charges that included attempted murder and aggravated battery, according to Ryan. Ruiz was arrested after police identified him as a suspect in the shooting of a 21-year-old man Jan. 28 in the 1800 block of West 47th Street about 11:20 p.m., said Officer Michael Carroll, a Chicago police spokesman.
Gonzalez had been in custody since early June after he was ordered held without bail on charges he used a rifle to shoot and wound a man in 2017.
The Tribune previously reported that Gonzalez was among five detainees who attacked a lone inmate Nov. 19 in a day room of Division 9, a maximum-security wing of the jail.
Surveillance video obtained by the Tribune shows Gonzalez punched and kicked the 41-year-old victim before the other detainees stabbed him with a shank, beat him and stomped on his head.
About seven minutes passed after the attack before correctional officers came to the aid of the victim in the day room, the video showed.
Gonzalez and the other four inmates were each charged with attempted murder, aggravated battery and mob action, court records show.
Asked why Ruiz was placed in the same cell with a rival gang member less than three months after he was alleged to viciously beat the other inmate, Ryan declined to comment other than to say that the department was reviewing “every facet” of the weekend killing.
“We take all acts of violence in the jail extremely seriously and work tirelessly to prevent those intent on committing harm from being able to do so,” he said earlier this week.
The sheriff’s office was still conducting its own internal review of the November beating when Ruiz was found beaten to death in his Division 9 cell early Saturday, authorities said.
Now the office has launched a separate internal review of the killing to determine if corrections officers followed proper protocol, Ryan said.
Gonzalez was in jail awaiting trial for the 2017 shooting of a man whom multiple police sources have identified as a leader in the Saints. That shooting left him in critical condition and his 3-year-old nephew with minor injuries.
Police found 7.62-caliber shell casings from a semi-automatic rifle at the scene in the 4400 block of South Wood Street.
The Tribune has reported that from spring 2016 to the end of 2017 more than 140 people were shot — 50 of them fatally — by gang members wielding rifles as their use spread across the South and Southwest sides.
Court records indicate that federal authorities were actively investigating the Saints-Satan Disciples rivalry as recently as last year.

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