Mother of Janari Ricks sues security company over the child’s death at Cabrini-Green complex last year

Megan Crepeau, Chicago Tribune
·2 min read

The mother of a 9-year-old boy killed in Cabrini-Green last summer has sued the company contracted to provide security for the public housing complex, saying the shooter’s intended target was on a list of people prohibited from entering the property.

Jalisa Ford, the mother of Janari Ricks, alleges in the lawsuit that AGB Investigative Services was negligent in allowing the intended target to loiter in the courtyard and failing to warn residents “of the increased incidents of unauthorized persons as well as gang activity and crime” in the area.

“This is a tragic case,” said one of Ford’s attorneys, Sean Murray, in an emailed statement. “On behalf of Janari’s family, we have filed this lawsuit to determine exactly why this senseless death happened and to hold those responsible for his death fully accountable under the law.”

The suit, filed Thursday in Cook County Court, seeks damages for a wrongful-death claim as well as medical and funeral expenses.

AGB could not immediately be reached for comment.

Janari was killed in a courtyard at the Cabrini rowhouses in July. Neighbors said Darrell Johnson, who had been arguing with another man earlier in the evening, shot through the fence into the courtyard. His intended target remained unharmed, but Janari was fatally shot.

Janari was featured in a two-part Tribune series about the changing Cabrini-Green area last year.

The intended target of the shooting was named on the “exclusion list” maintained by AGB and the Chicago Housing Authority, according to the lawsuit, meaning he was not allowed at the rowhouses.

However, around the time of the shooting he still “lived, visited, and otherwise loitered” at the site, the suit states, alleging AGB was negligent in allowing an unauthorized person to remain on the premises.