Five months after 61-year-old Jin Yut Lew was brutally beaten, robbed, carjacked and left for dead near the Chinatown neighborhood, Chicago police announced an arrest in the case.
“Lew is still not doing well,” Chief of Detectives Brendan Deenihan said at a Friday evening news conference at police headquarters, 3510 S. Michigan Ave. “He needs 24-hour care.”
But after “good old-fashioned” police work, Termaine Patterson, 18, was arrested and charged with attempted murder, aggravated vehicular hijacking and armed robbery, said Deenihan and Deering District police Cmdr. Don Jerome, who was also at the news conference.
Three others are still being sought, Deenihan said.
A juvenile was also arrested in connection with the case, but was charged only with possession of a stolen motor vehicle after he was found a few days after the attack in Lew’s SUV, Deenihan said.
Ald. Nicole T. Lee, 11th, who briefly spoke at the news conference, said the attack happened a block from her house.
“We were so glad when an arrest was made,” Lee said.
On April 7, Lew was found by city street cleaners bleeding from the head on a sidewalk in the 2500 block of South Princeton Avenue, police said at the time.
According to Lew’s family: “He was attacked repeatedly with a blunt object to the head and face and was left lying on the ground.”
Lew, who was unidentified at that time, was taken to Stroger Hospital in critical condition. Two days later, police went back to the hospital because a witness had identified Lew, whose 2008 Lexus SUV had been reported stolen.
After his family reported him missing, police were able to use video surveillance of that area and found he’d been followed by a vehicle that had been carjacked, Deenihan said.
Four people were inside that car, which was also seen fleeing after video showed people running near Lew’s SUV and then leaving the scene in it.
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“We realized Lew was robbed of all his belongings and car too,” said Deenihan.
The actual beating was not captured on video, said Deenihan, who said detectives used license plate readers and tracked both vehicles, eventually finding them and figuring out where Lew’s credit card was used.
Eventually, video captured some of their faces, and based on the locations of Lew’s vehicle, police “placed” the attackers in the area, Deenihan; said.
Lew’s family prayed for his recovery, but he suffered a coma and severe and career-ending brain injuries, according to his family and police at the time.
“We’re praying for him to get out soon,” said Alford Lew, 35, who spoke of his family’s agony on the phone in the waiting room of Stroger Hospital a few days after his father was hospitalized.
As they hoped for his recovery, Alford Lew reflected on his dad’s hardworking life as a chef.
“As a father, he provided all he could to ensure my brother and I got a good education. In the Chinese restaurant community, he was a well-respected head chef who over 40 years gave many new immigrants their first starts and trained them in his kitchen,” the son said, according to a GoFundMe site organized by relatives, which had raised more than $100,000 as of Friday night.