Police misconduct lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm report of two separate shooting incidents that recently occurred near Chicago in Jefferson Park and the south suburb East Hazel Crest. In the suburban incident, police fatally shot an unarmed motorist who allegedly hit a police vehicle with his car. The Jefferson Park shooting may have been due to road rage.
In East Hazel Crest, Ryan Rogers, was driving with his girlfriend to go get something to eat on the night of the shooting. His girlfriend said neither of them knew the detectives were police officers, as they were in undercover cars, and never identified themselves as CPD.
The couple was leaving their home on West 171st Street when two undercover detectives approached them. As they neared their vehicle, a green SUV and brown van pulled up beside them, going exceedingly fast. One of the two drivers pulled his car up to the couple and said “what’s up” to Rogers. Police later described Rogers as ‘suspicious,’ though he was unarmed.
The couple ignored the unfamiliar man, but as they got into their car, one of the undercover officers got out of his vehicle and approached them with something in his hand. At this point, Rogers and his girlfriend feared they were about to be robbed, and quickly sped away. Rogers side-swept the undercover police van during the quick acceleration, which is when officers started to open fire at the car. Rogers was struck at least once, but continued to drive a short distance until he stopped, seeing blue police lights behind them.
Rogers’ girlfriend claims that neither one of them knew the other individuals involved in the incident were CPD until they were told to get down on the ground and handcuffed. An ambulance for Rogers arrived about ten minutes later and took him to at Ingalls Memorial Hospital, where he died later that night. Rogers was the father of two young children, both with his girlfriend of more than two years. His death is ruled a homicide. No CPD officers were injured in the incident.
The shooting in Jefferson Park occurred near Sunnyside and Lavergne avenues after a two-vehicle crash a few miles away. Police stated that, around 5:40 a.m., a 37-year-old male was shot in the back in a probable act of road rage. The man was with a passenger in a Cadillac Escalade and was stopped at a house in Jefferson Park when someone in a Mercedes SUV opened fire at the Escalade.
The Mercedes immediately drove away, and the driver of the Escalade quickly followed until the intersection of Nagle and Foster, when the Mercedes struck a Toyota minivan. The driver of the minivan stated that the two cars ran a red light, and that all the airbags went off in his car, so he could not see who the passengers of the Mercedes were. After the accident all passengers of the Mercedes got out of the vehicle and ran. Those in the Cadillac continued driving, quickly pulling over and calling 911. The 37-year-old victim was brought to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, and the driver of the Escalade was taken to another hospital for only minor injuries. Police seized the empty Mercedes, recovering two guns, although no suspects are currently in custody.
Unfortunately, particularly in Chicago, there are instances in which police officers abuse their power of authority and injure or kill innocent victims by using unnecessary force. If you or a loved one was victimized by police officers who used excessive or unnecessary force, or were wrongfully arrested, you have important legal rights. Police brutality lawyers at Pintas & Mullins Law Firm are currently evaluating potential misconduct and excessive force lawsuits.