CHICAGO — A 17-year-old murder defendant in a Chicago suburb who pleaded guilty to fatally stabbing a 15-year-old male was sentenced to three years of probation and to complete community service hours.
Elias Valdez, 15, was fatally stabbed in August of 2020 in Glenview, which is about about 20 miles from Chicago, Fox News reported.
The stabbing unfolded when Valdez tried to flee with marijuana without paying for it, according to law enforcement authorities.
Consequently, the drug dealer chased Valdez, which led to a fight between the two. Ultimately, the defendant, who was 16 at the time, stabbed him with a utility tool.
Valdez was transported to Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge and died in surgery following the stabbing, police said.
The unidentified defendant later surrendered to police. He was charged as a juvenile in the case and ultimately pleaded guilty to second-degree murder. And why not, the deal could not be any more favorable for a murder suspect.
“When the defendant stabbed my son, he stabbed the heart of my family,” the victim’s mother, Marcela Fierros, said in a statement that was read in court Monday, according to NBC Chicago.
In addition to probation and completing 100 community service hours, a Cook County judge ordered the 17-year-old high school senior and his parents to participate in counseling.
The victim’s family has not been happy with the way the case has been handled by the courts since the homicide occurred.
Funeral held for Elias Valdez, 15, as investigation into his Glenview homicide continues: ‘He’s going to be missed a lot' https://t.co/chFQBt7IsB pic.twitter.com/7g2WsyzdI5
— aasseew (@asdfgeeeee2) August 15, 2020
“I feel sad for the loss of my son,” Fierros said in Spanish in September 2020. “I also feel angry because justice has not been given.”
They wanted the defendant to be charged with first-degree murder, and protests were held last year when he was instead charged with second-degree murder and held on home monitoring.
“I’m mad,” the vicitm’s sister, Elizabeth Valdez, told the Chicago Tribune following his death. “It’s not fair how he passed away. It’s not fair to know that he’s gone and I’m not receiving answers.”
The family is likely to be even more angry since the defendant is walking away with nothing more than probation, some community service work, and counseling, the kind of sentence that would be appropriate following a fight, not a murder.