Four Teens Charged in the Shooting Death of CPD Officer

On Wednesday, the Chicago Police charged four people in the murder of Chicago police officer Aréanah Preston.

The individuals charged in the first-degree murder of Preston include Trevell Breeland, 19; Joseph Brooks, 19; Jakwon Buchanan,18 and a 16-year-old juvenile.

Trevell Breeland, 19; Joseph Brooks, 19, Jakwon Buchanan, 18_Chicago Police Department

The CPD also said that the charged individuals were connected to multiple robberies and a motor vehicle theft earlier in the morning, leading up to Preston’s murder. Additional charges include armed robbery, arson, burglary, possession of a stolen vehicle and unlawful use of a weapon.

On Wednesday afternoon, Mayor Lori Lightfoot issued a statement praising the Chicago Police Department and detectives for their work on the case:

“I want to commend the Chicago Police Department and the hardworking detectives for working swiftly to apprehend and bring to justice the four individuals responsible for the heinous murder of Police Officer Aréanah M. Preston. Their diligent efforts have removed violent, repeat offenders from our streets. If you examine each individual’s history, it quickly becomes a case study on the failure of our criminal justice ecosystem to protect our communities from harm. It is unacceptable that it took the murder of a police officer for these individuals to finally be brought to justice. I continue to call upon the entire ecosystem of the criminal justice system to take the necessary steps to ensure that individuals with an undeniable history of violent and dangerous behavior are kept off our streets. The residents, brave officers, and victims of violent crimes who live and work in our city should not fear being harmed by people who are known to us to have committed violent acts over and over again.” 

Hundreds Come Out to a Tuesday Vigil in Preston’s Honor

Preston’s death generated national headlines and gripped the entire city.

On the day before Mother’s Day, Preston was set to graduate with her Masters of Jurisprudence degree from the Loyola University Chicago School of Law.

Instead, her family is left to plan her funeral.

On Tuesday evening, hundreds attended a prayer vigil for the fallen officer at her home police precinct, the 5th District Police Station.

Hundreds packed out the plaza of the Chicago Police Department’s 5th District for a prayer vigil honoring Preston. Vehicles lined both sides of the street abutting the police precinct. More cars filled every space, and more in a parking lot across the road reserved for a few dining establishments.

Fellow officers, firefighters, residents and dignitaries paid their respects to Preston and — by their very presence — offered comfort to her friends and family in attendance.

Preston’s mother, Dionne Mhoon, echoed the sentiment that colleagues used to describe her daughter: “firecracker.”

“Firecracker was definitely the word for my baby,” Mhoon said as she addressed the assembled crowd.

She also shared small anecdotes about her daughter that spoke to her determination and persistence, like obtaining a full-ride scholarship to Illinois State University or getting an apartment her senior year.

“She was a goal-setter,” said Mhoon, “She wrote everything down that she wanted to do, and she did everything that she wanted to do.”

After thanking the police department and referring to her daughter’s police partner as her adopted son, she had a request for everyone in attendance.

“If you guys believe in the power of prayer, if you guys believe in God, keep us in your prayers. “Even when all this is gone,” she said, referring to the vigil, “Don’t stop praying for us.”

Areanah Preston's mother Dionne Mhoon

Toward the end, she acknowledged the reality of life without her daughter.

“I have a daycare, and my passion for kids is so big. And to think that I have to bury my baby,” she said.

But she also took comfort in her faith and the officers present at the vigil, not to mention the countless others who weren’t, who have offered their support, whether spoken or unspoken.

“God is good, though,” she said, “Joy will come in the morning.”

“It will because I have an excellent support team,” said Mhoon, acknowledging her husband.

“And I got this big ‘ole police family behind me.”

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