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Boy, 11, Died While Protecting Pregnant Mom from Alleged Attack by Felon Recently Released on Parole

Jayden Perkins had a passion for performing and theater, and he had the lead role in several school plays, including 'Finding Nemo'

<p>Facebook/Helen C. Peirce School Of International Studies </p> Jayden Perkins

Facebook/Helen C. Peirce School Of International Studies

Jayden Perkins

An 11-year-old Chicago boy is dead after trying to protect his pregnant mother when a convicted felon allegedly attacked them with a knife at their house a day after he was released on parole, authorities said.

On Wednesday at about 8 a.m., the woman was getting her children ready for school when Crosetti Brand, 37, with whom she had a relationship more than a decade earlier, allegedly showed up at her home and forced his way inside, authorities said at a press conference Friday shown on WGN 9.

During the attack, the boy, Jayden Perkins, “tried to protect his mother,” Cook County Attorney Kim Foxx said at the press conference. 

Jayden and his mother were rushed to the hospital, where the boy died. The woman, who is eight months pregnant, and her unborn baby are expected to recover, CBS Chicago reports.

At Friday’s press conference, Chicago Police Superintendent Larry Snelling expressed his frustration over Brand being released on parole after violating his probation multiple times.

“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 on Tuesday.

<p> Chicago Police Department</p> Crosetti Brand

Chicago Police Department

Crosetti Brand

The next day, “he entered the home of the family and took the life of an innocent 11-year-old boy,” Snelling alleged.

“The boy’s mother was stabbed multiple times and she had an order of protection against this offender,” he said.

“Her 5-year-old son was also present and witnessed this attack. We have to imagine what that 5-year-old is going to have to deal with the rest of his life after witnessing something so brutal."

Brand faces a slew of charges including first-degree murder, attempted first-degree murder, home invasion with a dangerous weapon, unlawful use of a weapon by a felon and prior violation of an order of protection, Chicago Police Chief of Detectives Antoinette Ursitti said at the press conference.

Brand has a history of domestic abuse and was serving a 16-year sentence for home invasion when he was released on parole in October, Ursitti said.

The woman had been in a prior relationship with Brand more than 15 years ago and had filed orders of protection against him, Ursitti said.

In October, Brand was released on parole and placed on an electronic monitor, she said. During this time, “he threatened the victim via text and showed up at her home," she alleged.

He was sent back to prison in February for this alleged parole violation and released again on Wednesday.

Asked why Brand was released on parole, Snelling said he disagreed with the decision.

“He violated parole," he alleged. "He violated an order of protection and it involved the same type of crime that he was paroled for. So this is someone who should not have been on the street.”

Foxx agreed, saying, "The victim had an order of protection against him from previous encounters, and this history paints a disturbing pattern of behavior which emphasizes the importance of the filing of the charges today."

A support fund started for the family on Cheddar Up said Jayden was “known for his love of spending time with friends, playing sports, and performing. His infectious laughter and kind heart touched the lives of everyone he met."

Jayden had a passion for performing and theater, and he had the lead role in several school plays, including Finding Nemo at his school.

“He was always willing to lend a helping hand and he will be remembered fondly by all who knew him,” it says.

His mother “was a beloved member" of an elementary school for several years before transitioning to the medical field, it says.

If you are experiencing domestic violence, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233, or go to thehotline.org. All calls are toll-free and confidential. The hotline is available 24/7 in more than 170 languages.

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