Logan Square man to spend five years in jail for homicide

by Juan-Carlos Rodriguez
May 27, 2004

A 21-year-old Logan Square man was sentenced Thursday to five years in prison for his role in a gang-related homicide.

Frankie Mercado pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy to commit murder and obstruction of justice before Cook County Criminal Court Judge Kevin Sheehan.

In exchange for his guilty plea, prosecutors dropped the more serious charge of first-degree murder.

Mercado admitted that he attended an Orchestra Albany gang meeting on April 29 at which a gang leader recruited three men, including Mercado, to retaliate against the Maniac Latin Disciples gang for the murder of an Orchestra Albany member.

The next day, prosecutors said, Mercado and two fellow gang members drove to the 2400 block of West Moffat Street and stopped after they spotted two men, Emmanuel Miranda and Moises Urcino, they believed to be in the rival gang.

According to prosecutors, Mercado waited in the back seat while his partners got out and began shooting the two men as they attempted to run away.

After the attack, Mercado said he and his partners drove to another gang member's house where they disposed of the handgun used in the shooting.

Mercado was given the baseball hat and sweatshirt of the shooter, and later he put them in a plastic bag and threw them in a garbage can, prosecutors said.

The other two men are still at large, according to Tom Stanton, a spokesman for the Cook County State's Attorney.

Miranda, 19, died of his wounds, and Urcino, 24, is currently in good condition, according to prosecutors.

Mercado was arrested on May 1 for allegedly standing outside his garage on the 3000 block of West Belden Avenue and yelling "rocks" to solicit drugs to passing motorists. Police who responded said they found cocaine and marijuana.

Two days later, Mercado admitted his role in the murder in a videotaped statement to police and prosecutors