Murder charges were dropped this week against a group of five Chicago teenagers who were initially arrested after an attempted carjacking in Lake County, Illinois on August 13, 2019, according to an announcement Thursday morning September 19, 2019 by Lake County State’s Attorney Mike Nerheim.
“Let me begin by saying the safety of our community and the enforcement of the criminal laws is paramount. Justice requires that all offenders be held accountable and appropriately sentenced for their crimes. The circumstances and facts outlined in my statement support the charge of Felony Murder. However, after full consideration of all the evidence, mitigation presented by defense counsel as well as the wishes of the victim’s family, my office has entered into an agreement with defense counsel for the five offenders. This agreement ensures all offenders will be held responsible and face appropriate sentences.”
— Lake County State’s Attorney Mike Nerheim
Six teens were attempting a vehicle burglary or vehicle hijacking in Old Mill Creek. Lake County Sheriff’s Deputies responded after the teens tried to steal a man’s car from a home on Edwards Road in Old Mill Creek. During the attempted crime, the man shot at the teen offenders, and a shot killed 14-year-old Jaquan Swopes.
The other five teens, who fled the scene with the mortally-injured teen were ultimately captured in Gurnee and in Chicago near North Halsted Street and West Randolph Street after a police chase. One teen was arrested in Gurnee when the teens dropped off the mortally-injured teen at an unrelated Gurnee crash scene. The four other teens fled the scene in Gurnee and were involved in a high-speed chase with police southbound on I-94 until they were captured in Chicago. Shortly after their capture, the five teens were charged with Swopes’ murder for his death that was caused by the gunshot he suffered outside the residence in the block of 17600 West Edwards Road in Old Mill Creek.
Fast forward to today when the announcement was made that the murder charges have been dropped.
Diamond Davis, 18, with her murder charge dismissed, is scheduled to appear in Lake County court this afternoon, where she is expected to be charged with felony conspiracy to commit burglary and a misdemeanor of trespass to a motor vehicle. She is expected to plead guilty to the two charges next week, according to prosecutors.
The cases against the four juveniles, with the murder charges dismissed, are moving to juvenile court .
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