A Chicago Police captain was shot Tuesday evening, resulting in a gun battle and standoff that ended when authorities stormed an Englewood apartment, arrested a suspect in an Indianapolis shooting spreeand found another dead.
Capt. Ed Kulbida, the second in command in the Englewood District, suffered wounds to his head and shoulder when shots were fired about 5:30 p.m. near 72nd and Lowe, police said. He was taken to Stroger Hospital. Authorities said his injuries weren’t life-threatening.
A police source confirmed early Wednesday that the man in custody was Daniel Brown, 42, a suspect wanted for attempted murder in Indianapolis. Brown was not shot when police stormed the apartment, sources said.
Brown had wounded three people Saturday and had been sought by authorities ever since. A woman who lived in his Indianapolis neighborhood said he had a “Jekyll-and-Hyde” personality.
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During a bedside visit at Stroger Hospital, Kulbida entertained Mayor Rahm Emanuel with his “incredible” sense of humor and reminded the mayor that he once served with Emanuel’s uncle at Area 4.
One day after being “captivated” by the acts of police and fire bravery re-told at the annual awards ceremony in the City Council chambers, Emanuel said Chicago witnessed yet another act of “selfless sacrifice” by the second-in-command at the crime-ridden Englewood District.
“He decided to lead from the front,” the mayor said Wednesday, suggesting that Kulbida “warranted” an award of his own.
Despite injuries that included a graze wound to the head, the mayor said Kulbida kept him laughing during the bedside visit at Stroger Hospital.
Emanuel said he planned to “check in” with the wounded officer again Wednesday.
“I told him that if this police work doesn’t work out, you should think about the open mike Thursday night at Second City. Incredible sense of humor, given where he was and what had happened,” the mayor said.
“He reminded me that he worked with my Uncle Les in the 4th Area. And when I went out and talked to the officers — a lot of the officers [who] were there outside were off-duty, but they worked under him. It spoke volumes that they came to make sure one of their comrades — their leader — was safe. It is also a testament. His father was a police officer. His brother was an officer. That sense of public service that exists in his own family.”
At the scene of the Englewood shooting late Tuesday, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy had told reporters: “We have one offender in custody and there’s apparently one who is DOA.”
At that point, McCarthy had said police were “unsure who’s who. We’re going to let the detectives do their investigation and take it from there,” he said. He addedboth were considered “offenders” in the standoff.
McCarthy said he did not know how one of the men died and noted that hostage negotiators tried to talk to both men but never got a response.
The gun battle erupted after Brown opened fire from an apartment building, authorities said.
The U.S. Marshals Service’s Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force had tracked Brown from Indiana to his sister’s home in Englewood, sources said.
A Chicago Police fugitive apprehension team, including U.S. Marshals, were outside her home to arrest Brown at the time.
Before the 6-hour standoff ended, McCarthy said outside Stroger Hospital that police believe that the shooter was the wanted man, but “it’s not confirmed.”
He added that details are “a little bit confusing.”
After he spoke with the wounded captain, McCarthy told reporters: “The most important thing is he’s in great spirits . . . He’s surrounded by his family and he’s going to be OK.”
Mayor Rahm Emanuel also talked to the captain at the hospital and comforted his family, his spokeswoman said.
It was unclear if the captain was struck twice or if the same bullet struck him twice.
He suffered an “in and out” wound with a “fragment in two locations,” McCarthy said.
“At this point they’re not even thinking about surgery,” McCarthy said. “We don’tknow if they’re going to do anything tonight at all.”
“He’s to have a headache for a while obviously,”McCarthy said.
Pat Camden, spokesman for the Fraternal Order of Police, said the captain was standing on the street when the man fired shots from the first floor of an apartment building. The captain is the most high-ranking police officer to be shot in quite some time, he said.
Kulbida, 58, is 29-year veteran of the department. He has received 146 departmental awards, including seven Department Commendations, according to police.
After the shooting, hundreds of officers flooded the area, blocking 71st Street for blocks.
The standoff was a headache for people in the neighborhood. Residents were evacuated from the apartment building where it occurred, but police told those in nearby homes to stay inside.
Meanwhile, those who found themselves outside the crime scene couldn’t get home if they lived inside the boundaries of the police tape. Metra service also was disrupted through the area.
Some kids tossed a football Tuesday evening while the adults just watched police guard the street and talked.
LaShawn Campbell came home from work to see her block closed off with dozens of police officers standing guard.
“It looked like TV. It didn’t seem real,” said Campbell, 39. “My mom is in my house and there are police officers on my front yard.”
She said she lives three doors away from where the barricade was set up. That building and one across from it are apartments. The rest of the buildings on the block are homes.
Campbell says she wished police could escort her to her home so she could check on her family, which includes her 9-year-old daughter, her parents and her sister and her newborn.
“I know we’re in Englewood, but our block is quiet. It’s full of older people and young kids. This doesn’t happen here,” Campbell said.
Police in Indianapolis said they had been searching for Brown since Saturday evening, after he went on an hourlong shooting spree, wounding three people in separate shootings across the city.
Brown knew all the three victims, police said. He was charged with attempted murder and a warrant was issued for his arrest.
The chain of events started when Brown was with his girlfriend, his nephew and the girlfriend’s buddy in a car in Brown’s Indianapolis neighborhood. Brown began arguing with his girlfriend about their crumbling relationship, according to charging documents filed in Marion County Circuit Court.
Brown told the girlfriend’s buddy that she was to blame for the relationship problems, the documents state. Brown then allegedly pulled out a handgun and shot the friend.
The girlfriend, who was driving, stopped her car. The wounded friend and the nephew jumped out of the car and fled. Brown then allegedly continued to shoot at the friend and chase after her, according to the court papers. The friend later collapsed at a nearby gas station.
By the time officers arrived at the scene, Brown was gone. They found the woman inside the nearby gas station with at least one gunshot wound.
As police set up a perimeter, Brown carjacked a man in the parking lot of a nearby hotel, police said. Brown drove several miles to his home, where he ditched the stolen car, grabbed his dog and picked up his own car, police said.
Thirty-six minutes after the first shooting, Brown pulled into motel near his home and shot a second female victim, police said.
About 10 minutes after that, police said he shot a third victim, a man, several blocks away.
Then Brown allegedly stole a tractor-trailer in the Indianapolis area on Sunday from Ryder Transportation Services, where he once worked.
He drove to Chicago, and task force members were waiting for him when he showed up at his sister’s house Tuesday evening, sources said.
Tina Sfondeles, Becky Schlikerman, Brian Slodysko, Sam Charles, Fran Spielman, Stefano Esposito and Frank Main contributed to this report.