Chicago cop seriously wounded in shootout during traffic stop in Englewood, alleged suspect shot by police
Sunday’s officer-involved gunfight comes just four days after another Englewood District officer was shot and seriously hurt while attempting to pull a car over.
A Chicago cop was seriously wounded Sunday when a traffic stop in Englewood devolved into a firefight that also left a gunman critically hurt, police said.
Three uniformed officers were riding in an unmarked vehicle around 2 p.m. when they tried making the stop in the 6900 block of South Sangamon Street, Chicago Police Supt. David Brown said during a brief news conference Sunday.
After the car pulled into an alley, the male suspect hopped out and started firing at the officers, Brown said. In a statement, police said the suspect shot first and the officers “returned fire.”
A handgun was recovered at the scene, according to police spokesman Tom Ahern.
The wounded officer was hit in the torso and arm and rushed to the University of Chicago Medical Center in serious-but-stable condition, police said. The suspect was taken in critical condition to Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, though it’s unclear how many times he was shot and where.
As officers secured a perimeter that stretched blocks around the shooting scene, at least 18 shell casing markers were placed near a silver Toyota sedan.
Brown said the suspect was the only “offender” in the car that was pulled over, but the circumstances of the traffic stop remain unclear. Brown declined to answer most questions about the shooting, saying police were still analyzing footage from dashboard and body-worn cameras.
The wounded officer is “recovering” and “his team members are all shook,” according to Brown, who noted the officer is the third law enforcement official wounded by gunfire in Chicago in less than a week.
Police body-worn camera and third party videos captures the traffic stop and shooting, the Civilian Office of Police Accountability said a statement Monday. COPA said the suspect was shot “multiple” times, and that video and other materials would be released to the public within the city’s 60-day release policy unless prohibited by court order. COPA asked anyone with information to call them at 312-746-3609 or visit ChicagoCOPA.org.
On Wednesday, another Englewood District officer was shot and seriously wounded while trying to make a traffic stop in the 6100 block of South Paulina Street. Police internally identified a suspect last week, but no arrests have been reported.
On Thursday, a U.S. marshal and his K-9 dog were shot while serving an arrest warrant on the Northwest Side, police said. Tarrion Johnson, 19, was charged with attempted murder and denied bail Saturday.
“We ask for the city to pray and support their officers,” Brown said to reporters outside the University of Chicago Medical Center. “Now is a good time to say thank you when you see an officer because we need encouragement right now doing this very, very difficult and dangerous job.”
“Offenders are brazen in harming officers,” Brown said later, citing a spike in the number of officers who have been shot or targeted by gunfire.
In a statement, Mayor Lori Lightfoot referenced the recent shootings that have wounded law enforcement officers and asked, “when is enough, enough?”
“Are we not fed up with the catastrophic consequences of having too many illegal guns readily available to criminals, the mentally ill, and juveniles?” Lightfoot said. “How many times must I, and my fellow mayors across the country, plead with the [U.S.] Senate to take action and end the easy access to illegal guns?
“How many officers and residents must be victims of gun violence before we act?”
The officer or officers involved in the shooting will be placed on administrative duties for 30 days as the Civilian Office of Police Accountability investigates, police said.
Some Englewood residents pressed for information about the shooting and bemoaned the violence, while others goaded the cops and complained they were being blocked from getting home.
Clarence Gunt, a longtime Englewood resident, said he initially mistook the gunshots for firecrackers. Standing on a stoop a few blocks from where the shootout erupted, Gunt said he believes many officers in the neighborhood have disengaged as the violence has worsened.
“You got a lot of police around here,” Gunt, 60, told the Sun-Times. “But … half of them are just riding around making a paycheck.”
“I mean think about it, who [is] trying to work and get killed?” he later demurred, acknowledging the risks facing officers.
Another resident, 40-year-old Tony Carpenter, questioned the police narrative as he shopped surveillance footage that purportedly captured the shooting. “It looked like the police really just shot him illegally,” he said while conceding he didn’t personally witness the shooting.
“It’s the neighborhood. It’s what we face every day: Police harassing Black people.”