Jaylen Miles

On Dec. 29, police found 16-year-old Jaylen Miles fatally shot in the backyard of a vacant home the Glasgow Village area of north St. Louis County, just a few blocks his home in the 10400 block of Spring Garden Drive. Miles was just a few days shy of his 17th birthday. Miles had been charged as an adult for shooting at a police officer in 2020. His mother, Regina Jones, 34, of St. Louis, said Miles owned up to his decisions, and during his two years in juvenile detention she saw him change. He matured, talked about the Bible verses he studied and envisioned what he would do if he were released, she said. Mike Milton, executive director of the nonprofit Freedom Community Center, heard about Miles’ case. He and his organization worked with Miles’ attorney and court to change the teen’s bond status. In August 2022, a judge released Miles on bond, giving him a second chance. Every week, Miles was required to check in with Milton. He never missed a check-in. He joined his school’s football team. Weeks before his death, he joined a church basketball team with his younger brother, playing guard. His coach, Rodney Jones, said Miles was respectful and a team player. Miles just wanted mentorship and a father figure, said Milton, which was something he had lost when his father was gunned down in 2019. Miles also began participating weekly in a Christian-based youth ministry group, St. Louis City Young Life, with about 20 other students. “When you hear about the violence in St. Louis, people are so quick to write young people off and say they’re this, that, or got what they deserved, and I think Jaylen just changed all of our hearts and minds,” said the organization’s area director, Darren Young. “He made us realize how important second chances were,” said Young. Police also ask anyone with information on Miles’ death to reach out at 636-529-8210. Anonymous tipsters can contact CrimeStoppers at 1-866-371-TIPS (8477).

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Dec. 29, 2022




16 years old




10600 block of Spring Garden Drive,
Unincorporated (Glasgow Village),
St. Louis County