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Chase ends in West Loop after teen trying to steal car is killed by concealed carry holder in suburbs: police

The shooting sparked a high-speed vehicle chase down Interstate 94 that ended near Randolph and Halsted Streets on the Near West Side.

Police investigate a black Lexus wanted in connection with an attempted carjacking and fatal shooting in Old Mill Creek
Police investigate a black Lexus, August 13, 2019, wanted in connection with an attempted carjacking and fatal shooting in Old Mill Creek
Tyler LaRiviere/Sun-Times

Five Chicago teenagers were arrested after a high-speed police chase from the north suburbs to the West Loop Tuesday following an attempted vehicle theft in which a member of their group was killed.

A 75-year-old man called 911 about 1:15 a.m. to report the shooting in the 17600 block of West Edwards Road in Old Mill Creek, Lake County sheriff’s office spokesman Sgt. Christopher Covelli said in a news conference.

He had exited his home after seeing a black Lexus SUV in his driveway and saw a group of people apparently trying to break into or steal his vehicle, Covelli said.

Two males approached the man as he was standing on his porch and one of them was holding something in his hand, Covelli said. The man fired at least three rounds from a revolver, one of which hit a 14-year-old Chicago boy in the head.

The man, who had a valid FOID card and concealed-carry permit, then called 911 to report the shooting and request an ambulance, Covelli said. Investigators found a knife at the scene, which they believe one of the suspects had with him.

All of the suspects got back into the Lexus and drove away before officers could arrive, according to Covelli. A short time later, the SUV pulled up to Gurnee police officers who were investigating a crash near Route 132 and Hunt Club Road.

The 14-year-old who had been shot and a 17-year-old boy got out of the SUV, Covelli said. The 17-year-old asked for help and an officer called for an ambulance and performed first aid. The four other occupants of the Lexus got back in and sped away onto I-94.

The younger boy was taken to Condell Medical Center in Libertyville, where he was pronounced dead, according to the sheriff’s office and Gurnee fire officials. The 17-year-old was arrested.

On Wednesday, the Lake County coroner’s office identified the 14-year-old as Jaquan Swopes, and said preliminary autopsy results show he died as a result of a gunshot wound to the head.

State police were brought into the pursuit about 1:45 a.m. after Lake County sheriff’s deputies notified them that the Lexus was traveling southbound at speeds up to 120 mph on I-94 near Dempster Street, Covelli and Illinois State Police said.

The pursuit ended about 15 minutes later when the Lexus stopped near Randolph and Halsted Streets on the Near West Side, state police said.

Covelli said the Lexus stopped because it ran out of gas. Four people got out and ran away on foot, but a 16-year-old boy, a 17-year-old boy and an 18-year-old girl were arrested by state troopers after a brief chase.

The final suspect, a 17-year-old, was tracked to a dumpster in the 100 block of North Green Street by sheriff’s office K9 Dax and his handler, Deputy John Forlenza, Covelli said.

All five of the people in custody live in Chicago, according to Covelli. They are being held by the sheriff’s office and investigators are consulting with the Lake County state’s attorney’s office to determine whether charges will be filed.

The Lexus was reported stolen from Wilmette on Aug. 11, Covelli said. Investigators are working with Wilmette police to determine the circumstances of the theft.

Press Conference regarding Old Mill Creek/Gurnee/Chicago shooting investigation

Posted by Lake County IL Sheriff's Office on Tuesday, August 13, 2019

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