One Dead After Early-Morning Raid On Rich Court In Park Forest (Story, Video, Pictures)

officers and agents at 5 Rich Court
Officers and agents gather before 5 Rich Court Tuesday afternoon. (Photo: Gary Kopycinski)

Analysis, Commentary, Report
By Gary Kopycinski

Park Forest, IL-(ENEWSPF)- Once again, the sounds of gunshots disturbed the morning slumber of Park Foresters. Once again, shots were fired at law enforcement, this time two FBI agents wounded in the exchange.

Once again, a suspect is dead.

It appears the agents will recover.

And neighbors gathered on a corner. Family members of the deceased comfort each other inside the yellow “POLICE” tape, crying out loud when the suspect’s body was driven away in a plain white van.

According to the Justice Department, today’s early-morning raid in the village was part of a larger sweep throughout the Chicagoland area:

Several suspects were arrested today without incident. While attempting to arrest a suspect at a residence in Park Forest, two agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation were wounded. The agents survived the shooting and their injuries are not believed to be life threatening. The suspect, MELVIN TORAN, 50, of Park Forest, was later found dead inside the home. Toran was a high-ranking member of the Black P-Stone Nation street gang. He was set to be charged in federal court with distributing heroin.

Heroin.

Melvin Toran, 50, of Park Forest, is dead because of his alleged involvement distributing heroin.

Melvin Toran, 50, “a high-ranking member of the Black P-Stone Nation street gang,” according to the Justice Department, lived on Rich Court, a comfortable street with cozy cul-de-sac just north and slightly west of Rich East High School.

Just north of the Park Forest Tennis & Health Club.

“A high-ranking member of the Black P-Stone Nation street gang.”

In the same neighborhood our children walk every day on their way to school.

“A high-ranking member of the Black P-Stone Nation street gang.”

This Park Forest belongs to us, not some chump street gang.

These streets belong to our children.

Not some chump street gang.

Rich East belongs to our children. Because of our children, Rich East shines.

Neighbors of the deceased who had a view of events surrounding the suspect’s home alerted other neighbors when they saw the body being carried from the residence, sometime after 5:30 PM.

Melvin Toran
Melvin Toran. (Photo: IDOC)

And then Melvin Toran made his last departure from Rich Court in a nondescript white van.

Park Forest Police issued a statement: “This morning the FBI was executing an arrest warrant on Rich CT in Park Forest, IL. During the arrest, two FBI agents suffered non life threatening gunshot wounds. The suspect was later found in the residence deceased. No further information at this time.

“The Park Forest Police Department will not be able to provide any additional information or answer any questions at this time.”

We know so little.

The family’s grief was real.

Palpable.

The grief caused by Mr. Toran?

His legacy goes back far.

From the Sun-Times:

Court records show Toran was convicted of murder in 1984 and sentenced to 20 years in prison. He also has been convicted of drug trafficking and illegal possession of firearms, the latter of which earned him a seven-year prison sentence in 2008, court records show.

The Black P-Stone Nation street gang is at least one less today.

Good.

Would have been better if Mr. Toran had faced justice.

Again.

We can only hope and pray that this will severely restrict the activities of the Black P-Stone Nation street gang, and any other street gang, in Park Forest.

We deserve better.

Our children deserve better.

Our children deserve to walk down the street without fear.

To walk to school without fear.

Without fear of encountering some chump street gang.

Our children deserve all the good and wonderful things Park Forest has to offer.

No more mornings punctuated by the shots of gunfire.

Just mornings full of the laughter of our children.

And evenings of leisure and relaxation.

That is Park Forest.

Some pictures from this afternoon:

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