15-year-old James Vara died on August 28 after being fatally shot in the 700 block of North Green Bay Road in Waukegan. | Provided photo.

A fundraiser has raised $4,500 for the funeral expenses of a 15-year-old boy who was gunned down in the parking lot of a business in Waukegan last weekend.

James Vara Fuerte, 15, of Waukegan, died on August 28, according to community members.

A police officer on patrol in the area of the 700 block of North Green Bay Road in Waukegan heard screaming around 9:45 p.m. August 28.

Waukegan Police Commander Joe Florip said that the officer also heard gunshots and 911 dispatchers began receiving calls of a person shot in the area.

The officer located James, who appeared to have been shot near the Zip Fitness, 730 North Green Bay Road.

The boy died on the scene. The motive for the shooting is unknown and no one is in custody, Florip said the day following the shooting.

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Police are attempting to identify this vehicle for its possible involvement in a shooting in the 700 block of North Green Bay Road in Waukegan Friday evening.

Witnesses reported that a dark-colored SUV, possibly blue, was seen leaving the area at a high rate of speed following the shooting.

Detectives obtained surveillance footage showing the vehicle of interest near the scene.

The Lake County Coroner’s Office conducted an autopsy on the boy on Tuesday.

The case is being investigated by the Waukegan Police Department’s Criminal Investigations Division (CID).

“A sweet loving boy who was not supposed to pass who thought it was a typical night out ended up being his last day. As a team, we are trying to help his family and pregnant mother to help set his funeral up,” a GoFundMe page said.

The fund has raised over $4,500 in seven days for the boy’s family.

Anyone with information on the shooting or the vehicle in the surveillance photo is asked to call the Waukegan Police Department’s tipline at 847-360-9001.

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