Skip to main content

Police Say They Shot and Killed ‘Armed’ 13-Year-Old Boy in Chicago


The firearm Chicago Police say was recovered from the scene where an officer shot and killed a 13-year-old boy.

The Chicago Police Department (CPD) confirmed that the “subject” who was shot and killed during an “armed confrontation” with officers in Little Village early Monday morning has been identified as a 13-year-old boy, several Chicago-area news sources reported on Thursday.

According to the reports, a CPD official said that Adam Toledo, 13, who lived in the South Side neighborhood, died from a gunshot wound to the chest. The teen was identified by the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

Officers on the scene were responding to a ShotSpotter tip—the city’s gunfire detection network. Shots had been heard in the area at approximately 2:35 a.m. on Monday. Police said that officers, upon arriving at the scene, spotted “two subjects in a nearby alley.”

“One subject fled on foot which resulted in an armed confrontation. One subject shot and killed. 2nd subject in custody. Gun recovered on scene,” CPD spokesman Tom Ahern said, including a photo of the firearm and evidence marker on the ground.

The older male was later identified as 21-year-old Ruben Roman, Jr. of Edgewater Glenn. Roman was charged Thursday with one misdemeanor count of resisting arrest, according to ABC7 Chicago. He had previously been on probation after pleading guilty to illegal gun possession charge in 2019.

Adam Toledo’s mother also confirmed to ABC7 that her son was the person CPD shot and killed, telling the outlet that he would often sneak out of the home after she fell asleep. According to the report, she filed a missing person report for her son when she noticed he was gone last Thursday. He returned two days later, but left again Sunday evening without her knowing.

The shooting is still being investigated by the Department’s Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) and per police policy, the officer who fired his weapon was placed on desk duty for at least the next 30 days.

According to the Chicago Sun Times, COPA is typically required to release body camera footage from any officer involved shooting within 60 days, but CPD policy does not allow footage of minor victims to be publicly released. Locals are calling for video of the fatal shooting to be released so that the public can see whether the 13-year-old was, in fact, armed.

[image via CPD Twitter]

Have a tip we should know? [email protected]

Filed Under:

Follow Law&Crime:

Jerry Lambe is a journalist at Law&Crime. He is a graduate of Georgetown University and New York Law School and previously worked in financial securities compliance and Civil Rights employment law.