Dakota Earley, the culinary student who was shot last month during an attempted robbery in Lincoln Park, has been released from the intensive care unit, his mother announced on Twitter Wednesday.
Joy Dobbs said she received a call with the news around 1 p.m. Wednesday from a nurse at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center.
“Praise God,” Dobbs wrote at the end of her Twitter announcement later that day after she FaceTimed Earley’s grandmother who was with him at the hospital.
Dobbs, who lives in Georgia, plans to return to Chicago to visit her son.
Early, 24, was severely injured on May 6 around 3:05 a.m. on the sidewalk in the 1300 block of West Webster Avenue after his alleged assaulter, Tyshon Brownlee, 19, pointed a handgun at him, and a struggle for the handgun ensued, authorities say. Brownlee got control of the gun and shot Earley twice in the back and once in the head, according to authorities.
Meanwhile, David Husser, a Lincoln Park neighbor, heard the shots and was able to call 911, administer first aid to Earley and stay with him until police and an ambulance arrived.
After almost a month in the ICU, a partial leg amputation, and both Earley and Dobbs celebrating birthdays last week, his mom said he is making great improvements.
“He’s no longer on dialysis, his kidneys have healed just fine,” she said. “He’s doing more physical therapy, sitting up, leaning on his elbow, pushing himself up, and things like that. More upper body stuff that he’s doing.”
Doctors expect him to be in the hospital for four to five more weeks, and then go into rehabilitation, Dobbs said. Doctors expect Earley’s mouth will remainwired shut for another three weeks.
The day Earley was shot, his family opened a GoFundMe campaign to raise money for his medical costs. After raising almost $130,000, they closed it. However, when asked by the Tribune if that would be enough to cover all of his medical costs, Dobbs hesitated.
“That’s a good question because it’s something that we’ve been thinking about as a family,” she said. “I didn’t want to go back to open it up, but that’s a question that was kind of posed to me yesterday. … We are unsure on whether that money will cover his expenses and his (above the knee amputation) prosthetic.”
Two weeks after the shooting, Earley was asked by authorities to identify his assaulter. Earley circled Brownlee’s picture in a photo array and made a gun with his fingers identifying him as the shooter, authorities say.
“We’re just excited and happy that Dakota is doing well and we just can’t wait to be with him,” Dobbs said. “And I can’t wait to hear the first thing he’s gonna say.”