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  WINDY CITY TIMES

Teen Murdered; Father Blames Chat Line
2005-09-07

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A South Side teenaged boy's body was found Aug. 18 in Diversey Harbor—and the father believes that a chat line was ultimately to blame, the Chicago Tribune reported.

Michael Williams, Jr., 14, was found naked ( except for a sock on a foot ) in a park in the 2700 block of North Lake Shore Drive. He was sexually assaulted and suffocated. His cell phone was located in the 4400 block of North Lake Shore Drive.

Such chat lines are local phone numbers that people can call and talk to each other, much like an Internet chat room. While most of them request callers be at least 18 years old and avoid using their own name, several young people in the neighborhood of Williams said their popularity has been growing with teens.

Williams, known as Buster to his family, was a junior deacon at New Foundation Baptist Church and was an exemplary son, said his father, Michael Williams, Sr. The elder Williams believed that his son was using the 800 chat line because his cell phone bills were so high, NBC5.com reported. Michael's father believes the chat lines played a part in his son's death because the boy had no known enemies.

The teen's family last saw him on Aug. 17. He had called his grandmother about 9 p.m. that day to say he would return soon from seeing some friends, even though his father said his son knew few people in the area because he lived with his grandmother at 105th and Eggleston only during the summers. During the school year, young Michael lived with his mother in another part of Chicago.

Police have made no arrests in the case, a police spokeswoman told Windy City Times.


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