Dejon Irving, nicknamed Baby Chase, is smiling and laughing and enjoying himself on a sunny day at the park. It is hard to believe, just three months ago, he was fighting to survive.
February 7, 2019, started off like any other normal ride home from day care. Chase was singing in the back seat next to his 5-year-old brother and 4-year-old cousin. Their grandmother Kakesia Walker was driving. Chase’s mother, Briana Minued was in the front seat.
A car pulled next to them and opened fire – nine bullets ripped through the SUV’s frame, windows and seats. Only Chase was hit.
“I kept saying, ‘Chasey, Chasey, Chasey’, he just kept making this little noise,” said Minued.
Her mother Kakesia Walker raced to the hospital instead of waiting for an ambulance, “911 wanted me to wait. I told them no I’m going to drive to the hospital.”
While she drove, Chase’s mother and five-year-old brother Jeremiah put pressure on his bullet wounds.
Chase was on life support for three weeks. The family says they were given the option to turn it off and let him pass away. They said no. As time passed the brain swelling stopped and, in March, he had surgery.
“Oh, I was so traumatized,” said Minued about seeing her son so badly injured.
When Chase woke, Minued said he called out for her.
“I was happy,” she said.
Chase still has bullet fragments in his head. His left arm is not functioning properly and his left hand stays in a clenched position. He goes to rehabilitation and continues to improve, though he still faces more surgery.
While thrilled with his progress, the family is frustrated by police. They say, in the three months since the shooting, they’ve heard almost nothing from CPD. The family says the only update has been the release of images of a red vehicle believed to be involved with the shooting.
They had other problems with police too. CBS 2 Investigator’s previously exposed how Walker’s vehicle was towed to the auto pound and racked up $1545 in fees. Police failed to quickly give her a victim’s fee waiver. Walker’s loan company, which held the title, went ahead and paid the fees and then auctioned off Walker’s SUV.
“That was my vehicle that I wanted right away, so that I could get back and forth to see my grandson,” said Walker who feels her family was victimized by the shooter and police too.
“How do you tell a mother, who is grieving over her son, that she is the reason her son got shot,” said Walker. “What evidence did you have for you to say that to her?”
“I was hurt, cause now everyone’s looking at me like I’m the bad guy,” said Minued.
Most important to her is that Chase is on the road to recovery. Minued says he will have some limitations, including no sports because doctors say it would be too dangerous, but his future looks promising.
Police are not commenting on the case because it is an open investigation.
With regards to Walker’s vehicle, Chicago Police sent a statement saying, “If an inefficiency can be identified in the process established for the release of victim’s property CPD would most certainly look to address it so as to accommodate the needs of those who are victims of crime.”
Our CBS 2 Investigators contacted the loan company about the vehicle. An official admitted the SUV was mishandled and gave a replacement vehicle, fully paid off, to Walker.