Prosecutors seek federal charges — and death penalty — for suspects in killing of Bradley police officer and wounding of her partner
Darius Sullivan and Xandria Harris are already facing state felony charges in the Dec. 29 shooting that killed Bradley Police Sgt. Marlene Rittmanic and left her partner Officer Tyler Bailey fighting for his life.
Prosecutors are seeking federal charges — and the death penalty upon conviction — for two suspects in a hotel shooting last week that killed a Bradley police officer and critically wounded her partner.
“We are asking for the fullest extent of consequences for these individuals,” Kankakee County State’s Attorney Jim Rowe said at a news conference Wednesday. “I cannot say that enough. We want everyone held to account.”
An official request has been sent to the U.S. Attorney’s office to review the case against Darius Sullivan and Xandria Harris for federal murder charges, Rowe said.
Sullivan and Harris are already facing state felony charges in the Dec. 29 shooting that killed Bradley Police Sgt. Marlene Rittmanic and left her partner Officer Tyler Bailey fighting for his life.
Sullivan, 25, has been extradited from Indiana, where he was arrested days after the shooting. He appeared in court Wednesday and was denied bail, Rowe said. Harris, 26, was ordered held without bail on Monday.
Rowe also asked Indiana prosecutors to pursue charges against anyone who may have helped Harris or Sullivan after the shooting.
Rittmanic, 49, and Bailey, 27, responded to a noise complaint about 9:40 p.m. Dec. 29 at the Comfort Inn in the 1500 block of North State Highway 50, prosecutors said. The officers were directed to a hotel room that was booked by Sullivan, who was wanted on warrants and had previously fled from Bradley officers, prosecutors said.
At first there was no response when the officers reached the door, but Harris then said she would she would come out of the room. After about 14 minutes of waiting, Harris opened the door slightly and tried to squeeze through and close it to prevent officers from taking Sullivan into custody, authorities said.
Sullivan emerged from around the corner armed with a handgun and shot Bailey in the head, prosecutors said. Sullivan then shot at Rittmanic as she tried to run away, chasing her down the hall, pinning her against a door and disarming her with the help of Harris.
“Sgt. Rittmanic was pleading with them to ‘just leave, you don’t have to do this, please just go, please don’t, please don’t,’ ” prosecutors said. “She was desperately pleading for her life.”
Sullivan fired two shots from Rittmanic’s gun, striking the sergeant in the neck, prosecutors said. Sullivan and Harris then fled from the hotel.
Rittmanic and Bailey were taken to hospitals in critical condition, and Rittmanic later died, police said.
Bailey has undergone extensive surgery for his injuries, and his family is “cautiously optimistic” about his recovery, Bradley Police Deputy Chief Craig Anderson said Wednesday.
Sullivan was arrested without incident about 9 a.m. Dec. 31 by the U.S. Marshal’s Great Lakes Fugitive Task Force after he walked out of a home in North Manchester, Indiana, a town about 35 miles west of Fort Wayne.
Harris, accompanied by her attorney, surrendered at the Bradley Police Department about seven hours after Sullivan’s arrest.
Rittmanic’s wake will be held from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday at Hawkins Centennial Chapel in Bourbonnais. Services will be held 10 a.m. Friday at the chapel. Burial will be private.