Chicago police officer shot and suspect killed in exchange of gunfire
A Chicago police officer was wounded and a suspect was fatally shot on Thursday when police responded to a man acting erratically on the city’s south side, police said.
When officers approached the suspect at about 8:15 p.m., he reached into a backpack, pulled out a gun and shot one of the officers in the leg, Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson told a news conference.
Officers returned fire, killing the suspect, the Chicago Police Department said in a statement. On Friday, the Cook County medical examiner’s office identified the man killed as Derek Love, 50, an African-American.
The wounded officer’s partner applied a tourniquet to his leg where he was shot. The unidentified 44-year-old officer was taken to a hospital where he was in good condition, the department said.
The officers who were involved in the incident were placed on administrative leave as an investigation is ongoing, police said.
Controversy over police shootings of black men has sparked protests in cities around the country and in Chicago has led to federal investigation of the Chicago Police Department’s use of lethal force.
Over the past 18 months police shootings have dropped in the city, to an average of two incidents a month since the start of 2015, half of what they were in the seven years between 2008 and 2014.
Injuries and deaths of police officers in Chicago have been rare in recent years.
The last Chicago Police Department officer to be killed in the line of duty was Clifton Lewis, who was fatally shot in December 2011. Lewis was moonlighting as a security guard in a store, but had identified himself as a police officer so the death is considered to have occurred in the line of duty, according to the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation.
(Reporting by Brendan O’Brien in Milwaukee and Fiona Ortiz in Chicago; Editing by Bill Rigby)