Chicago Community Mourns The Loss Of 11-Year-Old Boy Killed Trying To Protect His Mother During Domestic Violence Incident



A Chicago community is grieving the loss of 11-year-old Jayden Perkins, who police say was fatally stabbed while trying “to protect his mother” in a domestic violence incident.

Jayden’s mother, Laterria Smith, had an order of protection against Crosetti Brand, with whom she had a relationship 15 years ago. Brand allegedly broke into her home on March 13 and stabbed her and her son, authorities said at a Friday press conference aired on local news station WGN 9.

Smith, who is eight months pregnant, was critically injured during the attack, but she and her unborn child are expected to survive. Her five-year-old son was also in the home at the time and witnessed the incident, CBS Chicago reports.

At a press conference, Chicago’s police superintendent, Larry Snelling, expressed frustration over Brand’s parole release after several violations of his probation.

“Let me start by saying this is something that should have never happened,” Snelling said. 

Brand was serving a 16-year sentence for home invasion and aggravated assault at the Stateville Correctional Center when he was released on parole the day before this tragedy. He has now been charged with murder, attempted murder, home invasion with a dangerous weapon, armed robbery, domestic battery, and more in connection with the incident, ABC News reports.

Snelling and Cook County State Attorney Kimberly M. Foxx condemned the senseless violence.

“An 11-year-old boy lost his life brutally. A woman was stabbed brutally in a domestic attack. Where is the outrage for this family?” Snelling said at the press conference. “Let’s focus on the victims.”

“An innocent child’s life was taken to try to protect his mother, far too soon, and a mother was attacked in what should have been the safest place for her, which was her home,” said Foxx.

Jayden was described as an “exceptional young man, respected by his peers and admired by his teachers,” according to a fundraiser hosted by the Peirce Elementary School community and his dance school, Gus Giordano Dance School.

He was remembered for his love of dance, performance, and his infectious laughter. Vigils were held in his honor, highlighting the impact he had on his community. Smith, who previously worked at her son’s school, was also praised for her dedication to students and fostering a sense of belonging.

The tragic incident has sparked discussions about improving the handling of domestic violence cases in the city, with officials acknowledging the need for proactive measures to protect victims and prevent future tragedies.

“We have to protect these victims,” said Snelling. “We cannot wait until the tragedy happens to decide we’re going to do something about it.”


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