Carjacking Convict’s Father: My Son isn’t a Monster

DES MOINES, Iowa – Last week, 17-year-old Terrance Cheeks Jr. was sentenced for his involvement in the brutal carjacking of a Des Moines man.

Cheeks was convicted of two counts of second degree robbery. His father has spoken out for the first time publicly since his son’s arrest.

Terrance Cheeks Sr. says his son does bear some responsibility for what happened. But he says his son does not deserve to be behind bars for the next 50 years.

“He isn’t a monster that people… have tried to portray him as. They’ve tried to build him up as this monstrous kid and he’s not that,” Cheeks Sr. told Channel 13.

Cheeks Jr. is one of three teens that car-jacked Mike Wasike in February of 2013. One of those other teens hit Wasike on the back of the head once with a gun causing severe brain damage. Doctors say Wasike will never again be able to walk, talk or hear.

Terrence CheeksCheeks was sentenced to 50-years in prison but the judge waived the mandatory minimum statute that would have kept him locked up for at least 35 years. His father had hoped for probation.

“I know that I wanted probation and I think any parent would have gotten up there and asked the same thing, regardless how bad they felt that he was wrong. You still don’t want to see your kid go to prison,” Cheeks Sr. said.

“I also told my son, you got to understand, what if I was laying in that street? And he says’Ii know dad. I’m truly sorry for what happened. I wish it hadn’t.’”

But it did. Cheeks Sr. agrees his son is partly responsible.

“I told my son, ‘know this isn’t what you want to hear but you shouldn’t have been there. You made a real, real stupid bad mistake that now Mr. Wasike is suffering from it, his family, we are, you are, you know?’”

Cheeks Sr. says his son played a lesser role in the attack. He didn’t have the gun and didn’t hit Wasiki so he should not have to serve the same amount of time

“If it was your son you wouldn’t say ‘put my son away for 50 ‘years or a hundred years.’ I do believe he deserves some punishment. And I think the punishment that was handed down is sufficient. I don’t believe a 17-year-old should be put in jail,” Cheeks Sr. said.

“He never touched Mr. Wasike. He never hit him, not one time. And that doesn’t say that he shouldn’t take any consequences but he’s just not that real evil person that he’s been painted to look like.”

During Cheeks Jr.’s sentencing, the judge said she decided give him a break because of his age. She encouraged him to take advantage of some of the programs offered in prison.

15 comments

  • mark

    Everyone who was involved in this VIOLENT ATTACK and did NOTHING TO STOP it deserve to go to prison for a LONG TIME……the victim will live with their cowardly actions for the rest of his life…..

    • VERA

      YEAH WHAT YOU DON’T KNOW IS REALLY HOW MR WASIKIE IS DOING THE ONLY PICTURE THEY SHOW IS FROM APRIL 2013 AND LAST I CHECKED YOU DON’T STAY IN THE SAME STATE FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR YOU EITHER GET BETTER OR YOU GET BACK WORST AND YOU BEST BELIEVE IF HE WAS GETTING WORSE THEY WOULD HAVE POSTED IT FOR ALL WE KNOW MR WASIKIE COULD BE JOGGING SOMEWHERE WHY DON’T YOU ASK FOR SOME RECENT PICTURES ASK THEM TO POST THAT NOT PICTURES OVER A YEAR OLD!!!!!

      • Troy Hendrickson

        wow, you are one seriously dishonest troll Vera, not to mention a sniveling little coward. Mr. Wasike is in a recovery facility and has made little progress. But you knew that of course.

      • VERA

        HOW DO YOU KNOW HE HAS MADE PROGRESS HIS WIFE CONTENDS THAT HE IS IN THE SAME STATE WELL AT LEAST THAT IS WHAT SHE TESTIFIED TO IN COURT WELL IF HE IS DOING BETTER LETS SEE A PICTURE A VIDEO BECAUSE ALL WE KEEP SEEING IS THAT PICTURE AND VIDEO FROM APRIL 2013 WHY KEEP SHOWING IT IF HE IS DOING BETTER BECAUSE YOU CAN REST ASSURE IF HE WAS WORST THEY WOULD HAVE PICTURES EVERYWHERE LETS SEE THE PROGRESS!!!!!!

    • VERA

      ALL WE KNOW THAT MAN COULD BE OUT JOGGING BECAUSE ALL WE SEE IS THAT MAN IN THE WHEEL CHAIR FROM APRIL 2013 WHY IS THAT BECAUSE I HAVE NEVER SEEN ANYONE STAY IN THE SAME STATE FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR AND NOT GET BETTER OR WORST THAT IS LIKE BEING SICK AND YOU DONT GET BETTER OR WORST FOR AN ENTIRE YEAR AND WE ALL KNOW IF MR WASIKIE WAS GETTING WORST WE WOULD KNOW ABOUT IT LETS ASK FOR A RECENT PICTURE SEE IF THAT CAN BE PRODUCED AND NOT ALTERED IF IT WAS YOUR KID YOU WOULD DEFEND HIM OR HER THE EXACT SAME WAY!!!!!!!

    • VERA

      EVERYBODY ON THIS PAGE THAT HAS COMMENTED ON THIS KNOW GOOD AND WELL IF IT WAS THEIR KID IN THIS SPOT THEY WOULD FEEL THE SAME WAY MR CHEEKS DOES NO QUESTION ABOUT IT AND IF YOU SAY YOU WOULDN’T THEN YOU ARE NO PARENT THAT LOVES YOUR CHILD UNCONDITIONALLY!!!!!!!!!!

  • Just a Mom

    Stop defending this punk! He’s just as responsible as the others. That man will never be better in 50 years so I think he should have received more years. Maybe Dad should take some responsibility too.

  • Mike Cee

    Mr. Cheeks, your son was part of a gang that left a decent man for dead and stole his car. Not only did your son destroy the life of that man, it destroyed the life of his family as well.

    Your son, sir, is indeed a monster who deserves a punishment much more severe than he will receive.

  • Sue

    Even if he wasn’t the one to deliver the blow, he deserves to be punished. He is getting a much lighter sentence then Mr. Wasike, who’s only crime was……hmmm…..oh yeah…he didn’t commit a crime. As a parent, I have sympathy for Mr. Cheeks, as a human being, I have more for Mr. Wasike.

    • For the people by the people

      Does anybody here remember Vera Lynn?
      Remember how she said that
      We would meet again
      Some sunny day?
      Vera! Vera!
      What has become of you?
      Does anybody else in here
      Feel the way I do?

  • Michael Camp

    With all due respect sir, your love and biased concern for your son as honorable as it may be is misdirected in your desire for leniency. If your son truly wants to prove he is not a monster, then I would suggest he stands up along with you and accept the consequence for his actions. It is of little concern to me whether he hit Mr Wasike or not. He was a willing aprticipant in a violent and inexcusable crime. In truth he can serve his time and resume his life, Mr. Wasike has been deprived of that option. I can be sympathetic to the pain of a father seeing his son pay sufficently for an irresversable decison to particapate in a sensless crime. But you lose my rescpect when you express that his punishment is unecessary. It is obvious to me that the character of his parents is not so much a concern. You appear to be a man of honor who has rejected the age old lies of thuggery and made a life for yourself the honorable way. You are in the position of having a son that apparently didn’t feel an obligation follow your example. Persons with grounded values do not tale other peoples stuff nor do they seek to harm other people. The fact that your sone willingly participated in intentional act of taking this man’s car makes him just as culpable as if he had hit Mr Wasike. It saddens me that you don;t appear to understand or accept that fact. If you want me to accept your assertion that your son is no monster, then I would suggest that you encourage him to man up and take advantage of the resources available during his incarceration to correct himself a human being. To be honest, in my mind the only “sufficent” consequence would be for the tree of them to be deprived of a chane to live a normal life for as long as Mr. Wasike has been granted. Be a good example sir and stopp whining and man up to the reality that your son has behaved like a monster and now must pay the price of that behavior. I will pray that you and your family are given the strength to accept responsibility and come through this experience in better shape than you were before this happened. When I see that your son has made an effort to stand up against the values that lead him to this end and make a contribution to society that begins the removal of the thuggery values from our society. Then sir, I will gladly see your son as not being a monster. Rest assured if he laments in the system to become a bigger thug, there will be no sympathy from me when he is held accountable for doing more damage.

Comments are closed.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 910 other followers