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Police to examine video in slaying of Fox Lake officer; funeral on Monday

Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz | Facebook

FOX LAKE, Ill. — Authorities have recovered video that could provide clues in the search for three men wanted in the fatal shooting of a Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz.

The homeowner told investigators the video shows three people near the scene of the shooting. The recording was turned over to the Department of Homeland Security for analysis.

Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Cmdr. George Filenko said investigators hoped to have results from the video analysis by late Thursday, though a public briefing was not planned.

Local investigators had not yet viewed the video because specialized equipment was needed to retrieve the footage from a hard drive. Authorities did not explain how the homeowner was able to see it.

Searchers have been hampered by the lack of a description of the suspects beyond the vague one that came from Gliniewicz, who told dispatchers only that he was pursuing three suspicious men — two white, one black — moments before he was shot.

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Gliniewicz, a 30-year police veteran, was shot Tuesday in Fox Lake while pursuing three suspicious men, authorities say. He told dispatchers the three ran into a swampy area, and he requested a second unit.

Dispatchers soon lost contact with him. Backup officers found him about 50 yards from his squad car with a gunshot wound. He died soon after.

Funeral arrangements for Gliniewicz were released Thursday by the Lake County Sheriff’s office. Public viewing starts at 9 a.m. Monday at Antioch High School, 1133 Main St. The funeral service will begin at 1 p.m. at the school. After the service, there will be a procession Hillside East Cemetery, 450 East Depot St. in Antioch, where Gliniewicz will be laid to rest.

A false report on Wednesday night sent dozens of officers scrambling through a cornfield in the dark in hopes of finding the suspects.

The report came from a woman who phoned police to say that two men tried to get into her car while she was stranded on the side of the road by car trouble. The caller said the two men, spooked that she was calling police, fled into a cornfield. Sheriff’s deputies and other law enforcement officers, aided by helicopters with heat sensors and dogs, spent five hours searching the area in the nearby community of Volo.

Eventually, the caller told authorities she made up the story because she wanted attention from a family that employed her as a nanny, said Christopher Covelli, a spokesman for the Lake County sheriff.

Kristin B. Kiefer, 30, of Vernon Hills, was charged with disorderly conduct and falsifying a police report. She posted a $100,000 bond Thursday and was released from the Lake County Jail.

“Last night was an unfortunate incident. It tied up a number of resources, including my detectives,” Filenko said.

On Thursday, Filenko also clarified that the slain officer’s weapon had been recovered. A newspaper report on Tuesday quoted one official as saying the officer had been stripped of his gun and other equipment.

Evidence from the scene has been turned over to a crime lab, and results were expected by Friday, he said, adding that he thought it was likely the suspects were still in the area.

Where Gliniewicz was killed — an open area of trees and marshland bordered by several houses on one end and a public works site on the other — has been the scene of several complaints about vandalism and squatters, Filenko said. He was not sure what brought Gliniewicz to the site on Tuesday.

The manhunt for the three suspects threatened to dampen the Labor Day weekend across one of the state’s most popular recreational areas, a boating and fishing playground known as the Chain O’ Lakes.

The region usually draws tens of thousands of visitors for end-of-summer fun, but concerns mounted that tourists might decide to go elsewhere because of the heavy police presence and fear that the fugitives could be hiding somewhere in the lush landscape of lakes, wetlands and forest glens.

“People are concerned about those individuals. And the few customers I get in here, that’s all they talk about,” said Marciano Martinez, co-owner of the popular Dockers restaurant, where diners can sit on a lakeside pier under plastic palm trees.

Business at Dockers was already down by half since the officer was slain, Martinez said. And unless the suspects are captured, having killers on the loose could drastically hurt business on the last big weekend of the summer.

At another restaurant hugging the lake, El Puerto, several regular diners said they saw fewer jet skis and power boats than usual at this time of year. From a nearby sandbar, Immer Hernandez reported seeing just one boat where there are typically 20 to 60.

Asked if the manhunt was to blame, he said, “I’m sure that’s what it is.”

DON BABWIN AND MICHAEL TARM, Associated Press