Bail denied for man accused of shooting at police officers in Little Village

Walter Dennard, 19, did not appear at a hearing Tuesday; he was still hospitalized with two gunshot wounds suffered when the officers returned fire Sunday afternoon.

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Chicago police investigate in the 2100 block of South California Avenue where a man was wounded March 1, 2020, in a shootout with police.

Chicago police investigate Sunday afternoon in the 2100 block of South California Avenue following a police-involved shooting.

Jake Wittich / Sun-Times

A man who allegedly opened fire on two Chicago police officers while fleeing after they tried to question him over the weekend in Little Village was ordered held without bail Tuesday.

Walter Dennard, who is facing two counts of attempted murder of a police officer, was not in court for his bond hearing. The 19-year-old remained hospitalized with two gunshot wounds to his left leg he suffered when the officers returned fire, according to the testimony of a Chicago police officer.

The on-duty officers suspected Dennard was carrying a handgun in the front pocket of his hooded sweatshirt and tried to stop him around 3:15 p.m. Sunday as he stood in the 2100 block of South Washtenaw Avenue, Cook County prosecutors said Tuesday.

The officers identified themselves and were wearing black bulletproof vests with the words “police” written on them when they approached Dennard, prosecutors said. But he “quickened his pace,” proceeding to cross the street directly in front of the officers while holding the object in his pocket Assistant States Attorney James Murphy added.

Officers told Dennard to stop again. Dennard allegedly responded by running while also trying to pull a gun out of his pocket. He eventually turned toward the officers and fired at them as he ran, Murphy said. One officer returned fire, then both pursed Dennard as he ran down another street, an alley and through a gangway, firing at the officers several more times, Murphy said.

Dennard eventually was taken into custody when the officers, following a blood trail, found him hiding on the rear porch of a home in the 2100 block of South California, authorities said. Dennard allegedly told officers he had thrown the gun on a roof; a 9 mm Smith & Wesson handgun was later recovered with a 16-round capacity and two live rounds in the magazine. Another round was jammed, Murphy said.

Ballistics testing showed shell casings found along the route Dennard fled matched the weapon that was recovered, Murphy said. The police officers’ account of the shooting also matched the testimony of two witness who saw part of the pursuit and surveillance camera footage, Murphy said.

Dennard is currently on probation for a 2019 attempted burglary conviction, Murphy said.

He is expected back in court Monday.

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