Harvey man kills brother during fight over living situation: prosecutors

Roosevelt Ratliff Jr. | Cook County sheriff's office

A 22-year-old Harvey man on Tuesday allegedly shot and killed his brother who came looking for a place to stay, prosecutors say.

The deadly encounter allegedly began when Roosevelt Ratliff, Jr., refused to let him inside the south suburban home, Cook County prosecutors laid out in a bond proffer read in court Friday.

Ratliff now faces a count of first-degree murder in the death of 40-year-old Dawayne McCauley.

The pair began fighting about 5:15 p.m. in the front yard it but soon spilled into the street in the 14600 block of Jefferson Street, prosecutors said. Ratliff’s girlfriend and father watched outside from the porch, prosecutors said.

When the fighting stopped, McCauley grabbed a shovel on the lawn and threatened Ratliff and the father, prosecutors said. They disarmed McCauley, but McCauley then grabbed a brick and threatened to hit his brother’s parked car, prosecutors said.

Meanwhile, Ratliff told his girlfriend to go inside and grab his gun, but she refused and ran into a bedroom, prosecutors said. Ratliff went inside, grabbed it from under a couch cushion and returned to the door, prosecutors said.

A witness in a car on the street stopped and saw McCauley motioning with a brick like he was throwing it, prosecutors said. That’s when Ratliff allegedly fired one shot, striking him once in the upper chest, prosecutors said.

McCauley fell to the ground and died at the scene, prosecutors said.

Ratliff handed the gun to another person in the home who tucked it in his waistband and ran north, prosecutors said.

Officers arrested Ratliff at the scene, according to interim Chief of Harvey Police Robert Collins.

A Cook County judge ordered Ratliff, who had no criminal history, held without bail, prosecutors said. He is due back in court April 8.

The slaying was the first homicide of the year in Harvey, Collins said.