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Teen to be tried as an adult in Aurora restaurant carjacking shooting

A boy who was 15 when he allegedly shot a woman during a carjacking in Aurora will be tried as an adult, Kane County Judge Sandra Parga ruled Monday.

The teen, who lives in Harvey, was two months shy of his 16th birthday at the time of the Jan. 16, 2021, attack in the parking lot of a Wendy’s restaurant on Orchard Road. He turned 17 Monday.

He is charged with attempted first-degree murder, aggravated battery with a firearm, armed violence and aggravated vehicular hijacking.

Authorities say he shot a handgun at the woman, striking her in the back. The bullet shattered vertebrae and severed her spinal cord, leaving her paralyzed from the waist down, according to Kane County Assistant State’s Attorney Debra Conforti. The bullet remains lodged in the victim’s spine.

Conforti noted in a closing argument last week that when asked by investigators why he was carjacking vehicles, the boy replied, “I’m not the type of person who likes to walk.”

“(The victim) only wishes that she could walk today. But she was viciously stripped of that right forever,” Conforti said.

Four males — adults Edward McGee and Darrell Frazier, plus this boy and another teen — allegedly carjacked a man earlier that afternoon on County Line Road near Barber Greene Road in DeKalb County. Authorities say that when that car ran low on gasoline, the four got off I-88 at Orchard Road and looked for another car to take.

The victim was eating a meal while in her car when she was attacked.

The teen has been charged as a juvenile in the DeKalb carjacking also. And he is suspected of being involved in carjackings in Hazel Crest and Lansing, before and after the Aurora incident, according to an Aurora detective and an Addison officer, who was on the FBI’s Safe Streets task force investigating gang- and drug-related crimes at the time. The boy told investigators he belonged to a gang.

As a juvenile, the boy could only be held in custody until he turns 21. And no matter what sentence the judge would hand down, the Illinois Juvenile Justice Authority could release him at any time, according to Kane County prosecutors.

Source: The Daily Chronicle

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