Man shot by police in Lawndale charged with being armed habitual criminal

Joe Harrison, 40, was shot in the leg during a confrontation with officers Saturday in a Lawndale alley.

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Chicago police officers investigate the scene of a police-involved shooting in Lawndale.

Chicago Police investigate the scene of an officer-involved shooting Saturday night in the 1100 block of South Whipple.

Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

A man shot by Chicago police last weekend has been charged with being an armed habitual criminal and ordered held without bail.

Joe Harrison, 40, of Forest Park faces the charge in connection with a confrontation with police officers while they were investigating a large group of people gathered in Lawndale during the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

Police said the officers were investigating the group shortly after 10 p.m. Saturday in the 1100 block of South Albany Avenue when they spotted Harrison drinking in public.

When they approached, Harrison threw a bottle of beer to the ground and took off running through a vacant lot toward a nearby alley, police and Cook County prosecutors said. As one officer tried to cut Harrison off and the other followed him, Harrison allegedly turned and pointed a gun at one of the officers.

An officer fired at Harrison and he fell in the alley, prosecutors said, but then got up and began running again with the gun. An officer fired again, striking Harrison in the leg.

Shortly after the shooting, CPD Deputy Chief Al Nagode said the officer returned fire when Harrison fired at them. Prosecutors said a live round was found jammed in the ejection port of the gun Harrison was carrying.

Harrison faces felony counts of being an armed habitual criminal and aggravated assault of a police officer, as well as misdemeanor charges of littering, drinking in public and reckless conduct, according to police.

Harrison remained hospitalized on Tuesday during his initial hearing at the Leighton Criminal Court Building, where Judge Mary Marubio ordered him held without bail.

At least one of the officers involved in the shooting was also hospitalized for “anxiety related to the shooting,” Nagode said.

Prosecutors said Harrison has five previous felony convictions, including aggravated fleeing from police and drug possession.

The Civilian Office of Police Accountability is conducting an investigation into the officers’ use of force.

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