Kewan Tillman, a 20-year-old man from Illinois, has been sentenced to 10 years in federal prison for carjacking a woman’s car with her two young children inside. Tillman pleaded guilty to federal carjacking and firearm charges earlier this year. The incident occurred on July 27, 2022, at a Thorntons gas station in Posen, Illinois.
According to prosecutors, Tillman approached the woman who was entering her Kia Optima at the gas station. Armed with a loaded handgun, he pointed the gun at the mother and demanded her keys. In a press release, Illinois prosecutors mentioned that Tillman threatened the unidentified victim with the pistol. The terrified woman quickly handed over her keys and managed to safely remove her two children from the back of the car.
After taking possession of the Kia Optima, Tillman attempted to flee the scene but lost control of the vehicle soon after. He abandoned the car and ran back towards the gas station in an attempt to escape. There, he tried to break into an occupied semi-truck but was unsuccessful. In a desperate move, Tillman discarded the handgun in a nearby sewer and made another unsuccessful attempt to force his way into another parked vehicle at a gas pump.
Authorities state that Tillman engaged in a physical altercation with the driver of the second vehicle until deputies from the Posen Police Department arrived and apprehended him. Further investigation led to the discovery that the discarded handgun had a modified feature called a “Glock switch” or “auto sear,” enabling it to operate in fully automatic mode.
It was revealed that Tillman had arrived at the gas station in a stolen Kia Soul from Chicago. This incident highlights the danger and trauma carjacking victims and their families face, as well as the need for swift and decisive action by law enforcement to bring such criminals to justice. The sentencing of Tillman to a 10-year federal prison term serves as a deterrent to those considering similar crimes, emphasizing the seriousness of carjacking offenses.