Deandre M. Atkinson, 17, was shot in the parking lot of the Victoria Village apartment complex about 8:30 p.m. Sept. 24, 2014. The incident occurred as Atkinson and his friends were walking to his vehicle, which was in the parking lot of the apartment complex at 2404 Ladley Court, north of Stevenson Drive. An unidentified black man dressed in dark clothing approached the group and shot Atkinson and his 18-year-old friend.
Atkinson was taken to Memorial Medical Center and pronounced dead at 9:44 p.m. that night. An autopsy indicated he died from multiple gunshot injuries. The 18-year-old victim survived.
Police have yet to make an arrest. Early in the case, detectives received false information from people, which resulted in the waste of several hours of prime investigation time. Police arrested those people for providing false information.
To help jump-start the investigation, Crime Stoppers of Sangamon and Menard Counties is offering a $5,000 reward, up from its usual reward of $1,000, for information leading to the arrest of the person responsible for Atkinson’s death. This is the first homicide Crime Stoppers is hoping to solve with its new cold case program.
Montez Coleman, Atkinson’s step-father, said his wife, Carla Sue Coleman, still cries over the loss of her son.
“I don’t think there’s a day that’s gone by since this happened that she hasn’t cried,” Coleman said. “I tell her it’s going to be OK, he’s looking down on you. I tell her to talk to him. I talk to him all the time. Every day I wake up, I talk to him.”
All anonymous information must be submitted to Crime Stoppers before Sept. 30 to be eligible for the enhanced reward of $5,000. After that, the reward for this and other homicides will revert to the $1,000 maximum.