A mother said her “life will never be the same” after her 20-year-old daughter was shot and killed allegedly by an ex-boyfriend in Zion earlier this week.
The series of events in the case began around 12:12 a.m. Wednesday when the Zion Police Department was called to the 2700 block of Hebron Avenue for a report of a man attacking a woman with a gun.
Officers arrived and found a woman, identified as Jaylen Crump, 20, of Zion, who reported that her ex-boyfriend struck her in the face with a pistol, leaving her injured.
Zion Police Department Detective Lt. Paul Kehrli said the suspect fled the scene prior to police arriving but was identified as Michael White, 28, of Zion.
Officers searched the area and sent out a countywide alert for White but were unable to locate him.
Crump was relocated at her request to a house in the 1600 block of Barnhart Court in Zion with other family members, Kehrli said.
A 911 call was made around 5:13 a.m. Wednesday reporting that White was at the location on Barnhart Court and was threatening the same woman with a gun.
The 911 call was made by a third party who was not at the scene, Kehrli said.
Officers responded and tried to make contact with the occupants of the residence.
The person who answered the door was unaware that White was in her house but permitted officers to check for him, Kehrli said.
Lake County Assistant State’s Attorney Stephen Scheller said officers then spotted White attempting to escape from a window. He retreated back inside the home after being confronted by officers.
Officers began evacuating the 15 occupants, which included multiple children, that were inside so that the residence could be searched.
Scheller said officers heard a single gunshot within a minute of confronting White.
Officers gave commands for everyone to exit the bedroom.
White came out of the room and surrendered, giving up the gun he had with him, Kehrli said.
Officers went into the bedroom and located Crump deceased from a gunshot wound to her head.
Scheller said that a witness told police he saw White fire the gun. White tested positive for gunshot residue.
An autopsy performed Wednesday on Crump showed she died as a result of a gunshot wound to the head, according to Lake County Coroner Jennifer Banek.
White was charged with two counts of first-degree murder after the case was reviewed with the Lake County State’s Attorney’s Office.
Lake County Judge Charles Johnson noted during a bond hearing that White has a criminal history dating back to when he was a juvenile.
White was paroled from the Illinois Department of Corrections (IDOC) in April for a Cook County case, state records show.
The IDOC issued a warrant on Tuesday for White after he tampered with his GPS monitoring device, Scheller said.
Johnson set bond at $10 million, which is what prosecutors requested. Prosecutors did not file a petition to hold White without bond.
Scheller said White hunted the woman down and that the murder was pre-meditated.
Crump’s mother, Sandra Walker, said her “very kind, soft hearted” daughter was “so excited to turn 21” but “sadly she didn’t make it to see that day.”
“She was the peace maker in our home and always trying to make us laugh and feel better. My daughter had so many plans, ideas, and aspirations to just elevate herself in life, and her opportunity to do so got unjustly taken from her,” Walker said.
“Our family is devastated and this still doesn’t even feel real. I will never get to look in my daughters eyes and see her looking back in mine. I will never be able to have a conversation with her, watch a movie with her, eat with her or anything,” Walker said.
A GoFundMe account was created to help raise money related to Crump’s viewing and cremation. The account has raised over $3,000 in less than a day.
“My Jay was a beautiful person to know, such a sweet person to everyone in her life. Life will never be the same without her,” Walker said.
White remains held in the Lake County Jail and would need to post $1 million cash in order to be released.
White is scheduled to appear in court again on February 15 for a preliminary hearing.