Home / News / Young Hammond, then 14, is accused of killing a man who tried to retrieve his friend’s stolen bicycle near Edison Park – Chicago Tribune

Young Hammond, then 14, is accused of killing a man who tried to retrieve his friend’s stolen bicycle near Edison Park – Chicago Tribune


A Hammond teenager recently appeared in adult court — charged with the 2022 murder of an East Chicago man who helped a friend retrieve his stolen bicycle near Edison Park.

The boy, now 16, was charged with murder on February 23; murder due to robbery; attempted armed robbery, a Level 3 Felony; and theft is a class A misdemeanor.

He was 14 years old when the shooting occurred. The Post-Tribune is not naming him because he is a minor.

The charges accuse him of fatally shooting Julian Valdez on June 19, 2022. He also accuses the boy of stealing a bike from another male victim.

He was ordered to be kept unrestrained. He appeared in court Monday, where a public defender was appointed. His next hearing is on March 5 before Judge Salvador Vasquez.

A formal probable cause affidavit providing an account of what allegedly happened was not filed in the adult case.

According to police reports, the first officer arrived at the 600 block of Cherry Street (about two blocks south of the park) around 6:45 p.m. for a gunshot victim.

People were standing over him asking for help.

Eyewitnesses said Valdez was playing football in the park with two friends. According to reports, two young black men stole the bikes of his friend and another player.

One was wearing all black clothing. The friend chased one of the boys down Jackson Avenue, then eastbound on Cherry Street. When he threw his bike chain, it caught the handlebars.

Valdez arrived in his car and his other friend ran to meet him.

The teenager who stole the bike appeared to have pulled out a “fake” BB gun with an orange tip. They said Ganja was outnumbered three to one.

“Don’t worry, I got you,” said the other teenager, who picked up the stolen bike, according to the documents.

He crossed the street and fired a real gun. He opened fire, hitting Valdez from the front. According to the information obtained, after Valdez fell to the ground, the young man came to Valdez and shot Valdez in the back again.

The alleged bike thieves ran west on Cherry Street. It turned out that the incident was reflected on the security camera.

Court records show Valdez was taken to Community Hospital in Munster before being transported to the University of Chicago Medical Center.

A record from the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office says Julian Valdez, 21, of East Chicago, who had the same address as the shooting, died July 23, 2022, at the University of Chicago.



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