Older Boys Used 12-Year-Old as Shield in Chicago Shooting

The boy will recover, but parents say something's got to give
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 13, 2017 6:59 PM CDT
This undated photo provided April 18, 2011 by Jan Tichy shows part of the Chicago downtown skyline from inside the one of the empty apartments at the Cabrini Green housing project on Chicago's near North...   (AP Photo/Jan Tichy)

(Newser) – A 12-year-old Chicago boy was waiting for a convenience store to open Tuesday when a car drove by and someone started shooting from it. Older boys who were standing near Adrian Clayton used the preteen and his friends as shields, and he was shot in the chest, according to the report of the incident his parents received from police. One of his friends, also 12, was shot in the leg. "They should be allowed just to go across the street to the store ... without stuff like this happening," his mother, Krystal Falkner, tells the Chicago Tribune. The family lives in an apartment building across the street from the store in the city's Old Town neighborhood.

The boys ran inside the apartment complex after the shooting; Adrian later told his parents he didn't realize he'd been shot until he got back to the complex, father Curtis Clayton says. Both children, and an older man who was also shot in the incident, are in stable condition at local hospitals. Adrian's parents say there aren't enough programs in the neighborhoods to keep kids off the streets, and that's what they blame for the gang activity in the neighborhood. "When it all boils down, the city ain't ever got no money when it come down to the youth, and that’s messed up," Curtis Clayton says."Something got to give in Chicago. Something have to give." Click for their full interview. (Read more Chicago stories.)

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