Boy reunited with family after carjacking, Amber Alert

Park Ridge police confirm that a missing 5-year-old boy has been found safe.

An Amber Alert for Drake Whitker was issued shortly before 2 p.m. Thursday. It has now been officially canceled.

Police say Drake Whitker was sleeping in the back seat of a car which was stolen from the front of a home in the 1700 block of Good Avenue.

At about 2:15 p.m., police in Skokie were notified that a vehicle and child matching the description of those missing from Park Ridge were found parked in a residential neighborhood. Skokie police responded and confirmed that the child was Drake Whitker.

The suspect is still at large and is described by police as a  young man, aged approximately 18 to 22 years old, with a short afro-style haircut and wearing a blue athletic-style jacket.

Park Ridge Police Chief Frank Kaminski said they believe the suspect fled on foot. Kaminski urged the suspect to turn himself him.

“We will find you,” the chief said.

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22 comments

  • Jen

    Please tell me that once they find this darling little boy, they will press charges on whatever idiot left him sleeping in a car. Parents need to be more responsible for their children. You DO NOT leave kids in cars unattended. I pray that this little boy is found and is safe and sound. But please nail all involved to the wall. Parent and car jacker alike.

    • Emily

      The mom ran back into the house to grab something for a moment and the guy jumped in the car when she was running back out. I'm sure the mom will never do that again, but it's not uncommon to do. Let's focus on getting her son safely home before we pass judgment on her parenting skills.

      • Tired of wa$te

        Emily, do you realize how a "moment" can be devastating. You NEVER leave your child in the car (or anywhere) unattended for even a "moment" for anything. Thank God he is safe.

      • Emily

        Absolutely I know that. I have a child and always take him out of the car to go back in the house to grab something. If he's asleep and I don't want to wake him up, I don't run in. But I do know that it's very common to do, and certainly not grounds for pressing charges on her. She's learned her lesson, and hopefully taught many other mothers the same. Sorry, I'm not really into taking children from their parents when it isn't warranted… What's wrong with you people? Focus your energy on reuniting the family.

      • Warrior

        Em – I'm with you on this. I never left my kids in the car, especially with the car running. I've actually had someone else run in and pay my gas for me – a couple of times when my kids were very young and sleeping and it was below freezing out. If I couldn't find someone I'd have taken them in with me to pay. But the car was NEVER left with the keys in it. Even now with my kids older, I still don't. But I don't think this monther is horrible based on this. I think she learned her lesson and won't make the same mistake. – I'm extremely happy he was found safe and reunited with his family. It's a much better outcome than what happened to Hailey Owens. Snached off the street and murdered within a very short time. Breaks your heart.

    • Brad

      Amen to that! And to the commenter below, Emily, we pass judgment on the irresponsible, as well as those responsible for the deed itself, because YOU become civically responsible to keep an eye out when he goes missing. Life maybe a random act for you but for some of us, we try and maintain a balance of order in our lives.

      • Emily

        What are you talking about? I'm not really sure how to respond to an incoherent comment. You're saying you're passing judgment on the mom because you were inconvenienced by having to "keep an eye out" when her son went missing? Think that one through, Brad. My response was that the mom does not need to be charged with neglect and have her son taken away from her. And said nothing of the fact of whether I agree with her actions or would take them myself. Try again, buddy.

      • Brad

        Inconvienienced? Put words in mouth much? You lose Emily. Don’t project onto me, i said YOU (I’m not generalizing here btw) have a civic duty of keeping an eye out for the boy once the Amber Alert is issued as we all do. Your problem: laying the blame on the parties responsible and NOT on those irresponsible. I.e, the mother? You know, the sentient being who bore the child leaving him in a car because it was convienient for her? Turned out to be covienient too, for the hijacker..

      • Emily

        I didn't mean to put words in your mouth…I really just don't understand what you're attempting to get across here. Project on you? I "lose?" This response is even more incoherent, and frankly I don't even know why I'm responding yet again, but…

        We all have a duty (I'd say moral, you are calling it civic) to be aware of missing and abducted children, yes. The way you wrote your comment made it seem like you are upset with the mother not because her son was missing, but because you have to "look out" for him. I'm laying the blame on the guy who stole the car, I think we can easily agree on that. I'm not going to go on the internet and gab about how the mother should be arrested and charged with neglect, because she knows she made a mistake–a grave one that she will never make again. Are you a parent, Brad? If you are, you'll know that not one parent is perfect. Some mistakes are larger than others, but she doesn't need to be arrested and have her child taken away.

        Sorry, I don't have any more time to waste on incoherent comment threads. You'll see on tonight's news that the police, rightly, agree with me: the mother will not be charged with anything.

  • Theonlysmart1

    Way to go BRAD!! You are spot on! Emily seems to have forgotten that once your responsibilities are forsaken it’s up to the State to take over; Like the State needing to find this woman’s child, because the irresponsible actions of one person,lead to anothers (leaving car on and keys in the ignition). And yet Emily claims to have children. I say this to you Emily: You are demonstrably too stupid to even respond too and I feel sorry that you wouldn’t have the State prosecute the mother, but leave it up to the State to find her missing child due to her poor choices :(

  • Lynn

    At the end of the day all that matters is the little boy is safe and back home with his family.The real crime here is that we have individuals walking around looking for trouble.If we all treated each other the way we want to be treated as the Bible encourages we will have less incidents such as this.

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