Massive manhunt continues after Fox Lake officer slain

SHARE Massive manhunt continues after Fox Lake officer slain
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A police officer searches an area for suspects involved in shooting an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

A community mourned Tuesday while a massive manhunt continued into the evening in far north suburban Fox Lake for three suspects in the fatal shooting of Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, 52.

He was gunned down about 8 a.m. Tuesday after telling dispatch that he was pursuing three suspects. His service weapon was taken.

Gliniewicz said on his radio that he was running after the suspects, but then communication was lost. A backup officer responded and found the officer injured with a gunshot wound.

An officer could be heard on the scanner saying: “. . . send everybody you possibly can . . . officer is down . . .”

Late Tuesday, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office said in an emailed statement that it had turned over the search for the gunmen to the Lake County Major Crime Task Force, which will be the lead agency throughout the rest of the investigation.

Several northern Illinois and federal law enforcement agencies aided the sheriff’s office during the first 14 hours of the search. They used SWAT teams, 48 canine units and six air support units, according to the statement.

As a precaution, several area schools will not be open Wednesday, according to the sheriff’s office. Grant Community High School District 124; Fox Lake Grade School District 114; Gavin School District 37; Gavin Central School; Gavin South School; Big Hollow School District 38 and St. Bede Catholic School will be closed, the sheriff’s office said.

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Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz | Lake County Sheriff

An Army veteran with the nickname “G.I. Joe,” Gliniewicz had worked for 32 years on the police force, said his mother-in-law, Terry Resetar.

Gliniewicz and his wife had four sons, teenagers and adults, Resetar said.

“He was getting ready to retire,” Resetar said, her voice breaking.

Asked if Gliniewicz, of Antioch, enjoyed being a police officer, Resetar said, “Oh God, he loved it.”

Resetar said her family “will be OK.”

“What can you say, hon?” she told a reporter.

“The oldest [grandchild] called me this morning to be sure I was OK,” she said.

Asked if she had a message for those responsible for her son-in-law’s death, she said, “You don’t want my message to them.”

She said her daughter and son-in-law went out to dinner last weekend to celebrate both of their August birthdays.

“Oh God,” she said.

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Resident Mike Willin said he was watching television this morning about 9:30 a.m. when he saw the commotion.

“I saw the helicopters right above my house,” he said. “I thought, maybe it’s time for me to leave.”

Willin said police thoroughly checked him and his truck when he drove away from his home near Rollins Road and Route 59. He doesn’t plan to return home until the fugitives are caught.

Christina Barcal said the Fox Ridge subdivision, near Routes 12 and 59 where she lives, has been locked down all day.

“This is crazy. They think they are hiding behind my house so I can’t go home,” Barcal said.

Barcal said that people who left their homes were not allowed to return. But people who were at home were told not to leave.

“My neighbor’s dogs had to go out, so an officer took her dogs out to pee,” she said.

Gina Maria, a kindergarten teacher who lives in Fox Lake but works in Barrington, said she promptly left her class with a substitute when she got a message from her son about the lockdown at Grant High School.

“I’m here supporting law enforcement officers letting people know that police lives matter,” she said.

All residents were being asked to remain inside and call 911 if they see anything suspicious.

Contributing: Jordan Owen

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