E.C. mayor's brother stabbed to death

2013-03-17T20:45:00Z 2013-03-18T16:06:09Z E.C. mayor's brother stabbed to deathElvia Malagon elvia.malagon@nwi.com, (219) 933-3246 nwitimes.com

EAST CHICAGO | The brother of the East Chicago mayor was stabbed to death Sunday morning, officials said.

Odie Gray, 48, was found by police in the 3900 block of Evergreen Street after receiving calls about a person on the ground, East Chicago Police Chief Mark Becker said.

Gray, of the 3900 block of Evergreen Street, died at 10:35 a.m. from a stab wound to the lower neck, according to the coroner's office.

The death was ruled a homicide.

Becker said Gray was found on the ground in an area between houses. He said detectives don't know how long Gray had been dead or what led to the stabbing. There weren't any identified suspects Sunday afternoon.

"Right now, there are no developments," Becker said Sunday. "We are still working it."

East Chicago Mayor Anthony Copeland said the family was reeling Sunday from news of the death. He said his brother had a family of his own, and he wasn't involved in politics.

"It's the worse of times because we lost a loved one," he said. "All of the people who loved him have expressed their condolences."

Copeland said the death is a reminder that no one is immune to violence.

"It's just a hard time," he said.

In February, Willie Cook, 25, was shot to death and his 2-year-old son was injured on the same block as Sunday's homicide.

Police said in February the shooting was retaliation for a homicide from January that happened on the 3900 block of Fern Street in East Chicago.

Becker said detectives aren't sure if Gray's death is related to the city's other homicides.

Anyone with information about the stabbing Sunday is asked to call the East Chicago Police Department at (219) 391-8500.

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