LAKEVIEW — Neighbors have raised thousands of dollars for a local restaurant owner’s daughter who’s been in the hospital since a driver ran her over last weekend.
The Lakeview East Community Partnership, an independent fundraising arm for the Lakeview East Chamber of Commerce, launched a GoFundMe campaign Tuesday to raise money for the daughter, identified as 24-year-old Bijan Choya Early. More than $4,700 had been raised by Wednesday afternoon.
The driver hit Early 6:18 p.m. Friday outside of her mother’s restaurant, Ms. T’s Southern Fried Chicken, 3343 N. Broadway, authorities said. She suffered several broken bones in the attack — which was caught on video — and has since had surgery to her pelvis and arm, according to prosecutors.
The driver, 30-year-old Aamir Mohammed, was charged with aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, aggravated battery causing great bodily harm, failure to report an accident, leaving the scene and driving without ever having been issued a license, Chicago Police said.
Mohammed’s bond was set at $5,000 during a court hearing Wednesday. Judge Mary Marubio ordered he be placed on home electronic monitoring if he posts bond.
Mohammed was using another person’s account to pick up and deliver orders for Grubhub — but he did not actually work for the service, a spokeswoman for the delivery company said in a statement.
Mohammed was asked to wait outside Ms. T’s until his order was ready in order to comply with the state’s social distancing requirements, prosecutors said Tuesday. He then got angry, “aggressively kicked the front glass door” and returned to his car.
Early followed Mohammed outside the restaurant with her mother, Angenita Tanner, prosecutors said. Early stood in front of his car while Tanner called the police.
Mohammed started yelling at them and threatened to run them over with his car, prosecutors said. Another customer waiting for food saw the altercation and started filming with his cellphone.
In the video, an exasperated Early and her mother can be heard telling Mohammed, “We’re waiting on the police for you, baby, because you just kicked our door. This is too much disrespect that we get on a day-to-day, and we’re just trying to be essential workers and feed people. This is ridiculous.”
Mohammed hit the gas, driving into Early and dragging her 20–30 feet before running her over, prosecutors said. He fled the scene but turned himself in at the Chicago Police Department’s Town Hall District late Saturday night.
Early was taken to Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where she remains in the ICU, according to the East Lakeview Community Partnership’s fundraiser.
“Anyone that knows Bijan and Ms. T knows that they are some of the most kind people in the Lakeview East Community. We want to do whatever it takes to help their family during this time,” the fundraiser page says.
The Grubhub spokeswoman said the company’s thoughts are with Early and “we wish her a speedy recovery.”
“We have terminated the contract of the driver who owned the account and banned him permanently from our platform,” the spokeswoman said. “We support efforts to prosecute both the individual charged with the crime and the driver who owned the account to the full extent of the law.
“We run rigorous background and motor vehicle checks before contracting with any driver, among other security features. We are committed to continuously reviewing and evolving our practices to prevent fraud and ensure safety and security for the Grubhub community.”
Subscribe to Block Club Chicago. Every dime we make funds reporting from Chicago’s neighborhoods.