Police: Man charged with felony after firing gun into ground on Near North Side

SHARE Police: Man charged with felony after firing gun into ground on Near North Side
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Nathaniel Westbrooks | Chicago Police

An Oak Park man is facing a felony weapons charge after he allegedly fired a handgun into the ground Tuesday on the Near North Side.

Nathaniel Westbrooks, 51, faces a felony count of reckless discharge of a firearm and a misdemeanor count of reckless conduct in connection with the shooting, Chicago Police said Wednesday.

About 10:20 p.m., officers responded to a call of shots fired in the 1100 block of North Dearborn and got a description of a vehicle that left the scene after the shooting, police said.

The vehicle was found a short time later in the first block of West Oak, where Westbrooks was changing a tire, police said.

Westbrooks told officers that he was arguing with a 42-year-old man when he fired his handgun into the ground, according to police. Officers later found the gun in his car.

During the investigation, police said a passenger in Westbrooks’ vehicle, later identified as 27-year-old Brijona Eskridge of Maywood, made false and misleading statements to officers. She was charged with a misdemeanor count of obstructing a peace officer.

Westbrooks was scheduled to appear in court for a bond hearing Thursday.

No one was injured in the shooting, police said.

Westbrooks’ bail was set at $20,000 Thursday, according to Cook County court records. His next court date was scheduled for Jan. 9.

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