A 16-year-old boy and a 17-year-old girl have been charged with murder in the shooting death of Jovan Wilson, the grandson of U.S. Rep. Danny Davis, police announced Sunday.
Tariq M. Harris, 16, of the 8100 block of South Loomis Boulevard, and Dijae T. Banks, 17, of the 12000 block of South Indiana Avenue, both are charged as adults with first-degree murder, police officials said. The teens are expected to appear in bond court Sunday afternoon, according to a Chicago police news release. The pair were taken into custody Saturday.
Jovan, 15, was killed at his Englewood home around 6:45 p.m. Friday, police said.
Jovan was at his home in the 5600 block of South Princeton Avenue with an uncle, his 16-year-old sister, 14-year-old brother and 8-year-old brother when two teenage assailants entered the home and began arguing with Jovan, police and Davis said. The teen’s mother had left the home to pick up food.
During the argument, one of the assailants pulled out a gun and shot Jovan in the head. Investigators initially believed the attack began as a home invasion but later determined the shooting stemmed from a dispute over shoes.
“The kids were at the house exchanging clothes,” police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said. “There was some dispute about one returning gym shoes to another, and that resulted in the shooting.”
Jovan, who loved sports and rap music, was a sophomore at Perspectives Charter High School in the South Loop neighborhood.
“He was a typical 15-year-old,” the Democratic congressman said of his grandson. “He liked basketball. If you listened to him he was a basketball star, but he liked basketball and music. All those kinds of things. He was an avid sports fan, he knew all about, you know, the stats of different players.”
Davis had just returned to Chicago from Washington, D.C., and was in his office when his son Stacey Wilson, Jovan’s father, called him with news of the shooting.
He said he might never know if there was anything, such as better education, that could have prevented his grandson’s homicide.
“I do know that I grieve for my family,” Davis said at a news conference. Friday.”I grieve for the young man who pulled the trigger. I grieve for his family, his parents, his friends, some of whom will never see him again.”
Davis, a former Chicago alderman and Cook County commissioner, was first elected to the U.S. House in 1996. He was elected to an 11th term earlier this month. His 7th Congressional District covers much of downtown Chicago, the West Side and western Cook County suburbs and parts of the South Side, including the neighborhood where his grandson was killed.
Davis said gun violence is a problem society deals with every day and reflected on how he’s attended multiple funerals for other slain teenagers.
“I guess that I always knew that the possibility existed that it could happen close to me,” Davis said. “As a matter of fact, I thought it was so unfortunate because Jovan had just reached a point, 15, his grades had improved at school. His father had just told me about how proud of him that he was because he was catching on and realizing that all of his life was in front of him.”
The family had talked to the teen about staying at home at night. Still, that didn’t spare him from violence, Davis said. “Unfortunately, here he was in the house at home, minding his own business, and some intruders would come and snuff his life away.”
The boy’s father, teary-eyed, stood next to Davis during the news conference. He had just given his son money to get a haircut, and he thought the next time he would talk to him would be about an appropriate haircut to get.
“It’s going to take me some time to grieve,” Wilson said.
Violence has spiked this year in Chicago to levels not seen since the 1990s, and several people with prominent connections have been killed in addition to Davis’ grandson.
In mid-August, Arshell Dennis, a 19-year-old college student and the son of a Chicago police officer, was shot to death in the Wrightwood neighborhood on the Southwest Side. About two weeks later, Nykea Aldridge, 32, a cousin of Chicago Bulls star Dwyane Wade, was gunned down while pushing her baby in a stroller in the Parkway Gardens neighborhood on the South Side.
Chicago Tribune’s Tony Briscoe, Dawn Rhodes and Jeremy Gorner contributed
(c)2016 the Chicago Tribune
Visit the Chicago Tribune at www.chicagotribune.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.
This content is published through a licensing agreement with Acquire Media using its NewsEdge technology.