Humboldt Park shooting: Charges dropped against 1 person in death of boy, 7, killed by stray bullet

19-year-old Joseph Serrano was also charged in the Chicago shooting

ByABC7 Chicago Digital Team WLS logo
Friday, November 25, 2022
Charges dropped against 1 person in shooting death of 7-year-old boy
EMBED <>More Videos

Chicago police said another suspect has been charged after a 7-year-old boy was killed by a stray bullet inside his Humboldt Park home.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Another suspect has been charged after a 7-year-old boy was killed by a stray bullet inside his Humboldt Park home last month, Chicago police said.

Akeem Briscoe was shot in the stomach by a stray bullet the night of Oct. 26, as he was inside his Humboldt Park home, washing his hands and getting ready for bed.

Earlier this week, police said a 16-year-old boy is charged with murder in Akeem's death. Police said he was 15 at the time of the shooting, and is being charged as a juvenile.

Thursday morning, police said two more suspects, 19-year-old Joseph Serrano and an 18-year-old, were each charged with murder. However, later Thursday, court records show the state's attorney's office dropped that charge against the 18-year-old.

Police said that stray bullet pierced a window of the boy's home after gunfire erupted in the alley in the 2600-block of West Potomac Avenue. No one from those two groups were injured, but the bullet went into Akeem's home, striking and killing him.

"A separate group from the alley, they were targeting this group that was in a car in the alley," said CPD Chief of Detectives Brendan Deenihan. "They shoot at that group; obviously the bullet misses that group. There was nobody struck in that group, and the bullet goes through the window, striking the 7-year-old."

Police said two adults have also been taken into custody in relation to the case, and police are pursuing charges against them, as well. CPD said the teen boy did not fire the shots that killed Akeem, but was in possession of the gun and handed it to one of the adults, who fired the fatal shot.

READ MORE: 7-year-old boy dies after being struck by stray bullet in home, CPD says

Police said a family member told them the boy was in the bathroom when a bullet came through the window and struck him. Police said they do not believe anyone inside the residence was an intended target of the shooting.

Akeem was shot in front of his mother and two siblings. They had just buried his father the previous weekend, who had died from a medical condition.

Humboldt Park shooting: Teen charged in death of boy, 7, killed by stray bullet in home

A reward of up to $15,000 was been offered for information in the case. Investigators are working the case, which has drawn the attention of the mayor.

"This didn't happen in a vacuum," Mayor Lori Lightfoot said. "There are people out there right now that within the sound of my voice who know exactly what happened. You must come forward."

Newberry Math and Science Academy's principal said this loss is sure to raise a lot of emotions and questions for the entire school. School officials said grief counselors would be available.

Akeem's mother told ABC7 Chicago she will not feel peace until everyone responsible for her son's murder is in jail.

In a statement, the Cook County State's Attorney's Office said, "The Cook County State's Attorney's Office has an ethical obligation only to bring forth charges when they are supported by the facts, evidence, and law. On October 26, 2022, seven-year-old, Akeem Briscoe, was tragically and senselessly killed by gunfire while he was inside his home. We have reviewed the evidence in this case and have charged two individuals with First Degree Murder. A third individual was arrested and CPD filed charges against him, but the Cook County State's Attorney's Office has not yet made a charging decision as to this third offender. As always, as additional evidence is gathered, we stand ready to bring charges when appropriate. Our communities are plagued by horrific violence that claims too many innocent victims; however, we must adhere to our ethical and legal standards in evaluating charges."

INTERACTIVE SAFETY TRACKER | Track crime and safety in your neighborhood