CHICAGO | A South Holland man was sentenced Wednesday to 50 years in prison for the shooting death of a suburban man following a road rage incident in 2009, according to the Cook County state's attorney's office.
Mikel Pernell, 34, of the 400 block of East 162nd Street, was convicted in September of first-degree murder in the death of George Cruz, 30, of Burbank.
Cook County Judge Carol Howard handed down the sentence Wednesday.
According to prosecutors, on Sept. 18, 2009, Cruz was driving north on Torrence Avenue near 108th Street in the South Deering neighborhood when he realized he had to turn left at 105th Street. He changed lanes, accidentally cutting off Pernell's vehicle.
Pernell then drove alongside the passenger side of Cruz's vehicle, yelling at him. Cruz apologized, explaining he needed to turn at 105th Street. Pernell then drove off and pulled over near 105th Street and Hoxie Avenue.
Cruz also stopped near 105th and Hoxie and that is when Pernell reached out of his car window with a gun and shot Cruz, hitting him in the left eye. Pernell drove off, and Cruz died as a result of the injury, according to the news release.
A witness gave police a description of Pernell's vehicle, and he was located and arrested a short time later. The witness also identified Pernell in a lineup.