ITeam

Suspect in 5-year-old's shooting bragged about gang ties on camera

Monday, July 08, 2013

One of the victims of Chicago's holiday violence was 5-year-old Jaden Donald, who was shot and wounded in a South Side park.

Police say the child was a mistaken victim of a gang attack.

The accused shooter spoke in an interview he did with ABC7 investigative reporter Chuck Goudie three years ago.

There was something familiar about 24-year-old Darrell Chambers, the man police say opened fire on rival gangbangers in a South Side park on the 4th of July. That's because he was featured in an I-Team report on gang violence in 2010.

Back then he was out on the street, boasting about his turf and the violence that goes with it. Now, he's in the county jail, charged with attempted murder.

Chambers was mugging for the I-Team camera back in May of 2010. Now, he's in a mug shot after being arrested by Chicago police for a July Fourth gang shooting in Cooper Park. Jaden, 5, was shot and critically wounded as he watched fireworks with his family, the unintended victim of a seemingly never-ending gang war.

"Don't bring your ass around here," Chambers said in 2010 for the camera.

Chambers laid down his law when we first met him three years ago, while spending several nights in Chicago's most dangerous neighborhoods.

"The 'hood is kinda bad. It's bad," said an 11-year-old.

On that night three years ago, then-21-year-old Chambers was on the street toasting gang life with a glass of cognac.

"I was raised around here, 21 years in the same crib and I'm outside I'm alive," he said.

"What does it say that a 13-year-old is afraid to come outside because he feels it's not safe?" Goudie asked.

"You scared, go to bed, that's how it is. You scared, stay in the house, play a game or something," Chambers said.

"Why should it be that way?" Goudie asked.

"What do you want us to do? We protecting what the f--- is ours," Chambers said.

Three years later, Darrell Chambers is in jail for allegedly protecting a city park he thought was his, while Jaden is in intensive care, because no one was able to protect him.

"You would never think for a moment that playing in the park with your kids that you have to worry about them being shot," said Jaden's mom, Jasmine Donald. "Why would you do something like this? What morals or values... What kind of person thinks this is OK?"

Chambers is being held without bond. He is also accused of wounding two men in the park; it's unclear if they were the intended targets.

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