A person of interest is being interviewed by detectives and the suspect vehicle that struck a 12-year-old boy in Deerfield has been recovered, police said.
“The vehicle is being processed for items of evidentiary value and police are also interviewing a person of interest at this time,” Deerfield Deputy Police Chief Brian Budny said Wednesday morning.
12-year-old Chase Thompson was struck by a car around 7:07 p.m. Friday near Deerfield Road and Beverly Place in Deerfield.
The Deerfield-Bannockburn Fire Department and Deerfield Police Department responded to a call of a person found down on the ground. A person driving by found Chase unresponsive in the roadway and called 911.
The Deerfield Police Department said that Chase was struck by a vehicle that was traveling westbound on Deerfield Road. The vehicle did not stop and continued driving on Deerfield Road.
Paramedics transported the critically injured boy to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville. He was then transferred by a medical helicopter to Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago where he has been stabilized but remains in critical condition.
Chase’s father, Thad Thompson, told the Lake County News-Sun that his son, who is autistic and non-verbal, escaped from their home without shoes or a coat. On Monday, Thompson said that his son is ‘very slowly improving.’
Thompson also said he is offering a $10,000 reward to anyone who provides information leading to a conviction of the driver who fled the scene, or to the driver if they turn themselves in to police.
However, he told CBS Chicago that his reward offer to the driver who hit Chase will expire at 7:07 p.m. this coming Friday, which is exactly one week from the accident.
It is unclear if the person of interest turned themselves in to police Wednesday or if police located them.
“No further information is being released at this time due to the ongoing investigation,” Budny said.
Police said that the vehicle was believed to be a 2013-2016 Ford Escape with an SEL or Titanium trim package. That vehicle is believed to be in police custody, officials said Wednesday morning.
A GoFundMe account has raised almost $40,000 for medical bills and other costs the family will endure due to the incident.
The Lake County Major Crash Assistance Team (MCAT) is assisting Deerfield police with the investigation. Anyone with information is urged to contact the Deerfield Police Department at 847-945-8636.