Chicago police shot an unarmed 13-year-old during a chase Wednesday night on the West Side, officials said. The incident began 24 hours earlier in Oak Park when a 3-year-old child was inadvertently abducted during a car theft in Oak Park Tuesday night. Chicago and Oak Park police are investigating the related incidents.
According to Oak Park police reports, the mother of the child exited her gray 2017 Honda CRV, leaving the car running with her child seated inside the vehicle, at 7:35 p.m., May 17 in the 100 block of North Oak Park Avenue. Shortly after, a man in a black face mask got into the car and then drove off in it southbound on Oak Park Avenue. The CRV was followed by an older gray Honda Accord carrying four younger men.
Ten minutes later, a witness saw the offender park the CRV with the unharmed child still inside it on the 200 block of Madison Street in Oak Park. The offender then entered a gray sedan, which was last seen traveling eastbound on Madison Street.
Chicago police found that same gray sedan the following day, beginning the chain of events that ultimately led to the shooting of an unarmed 13-year-old boy by a Chicago police officer.
At about 10:14 p.m. Wednesday, Chicago police officers stopped the driver of the grey sedan, according to a Chicago police statement. The boy, who had been in the car, got out and ran away as officers walked up to it, officials said.
Chicago officers chased the boy to the 800 block of North Cicero Avenue, where one officer shot him, police said.
The boy was hospitalized in serious condition, according to a Civilian Office of Police Accountability news.
Investigators from the Civilian Office of Police Accountability immediately went to the scene. They have video of the incident, including the body-camera footage of the officer who shot the boy, according to the news release. But the agency is prohibited from releasing that footage, according to its statement.
“Worse fear confirmed!” anti-violence group GoodKids MadCity tweeted after the shooting. “Especially knowing how this child will be handcuffed to the hospital bed, criminalized by the media & silenced from sharing their version of what happened, locked away in the” Juvenile Temporary Detention Center.
Officers were not wounded, but two were taken to a hospital “for observation,” police said. They were in good condition.
Someone in the stolen car drove off, police said. It was later found unoccupied in the 3800 block of West Monroe Street.
The Chicago officers involved will be placed on routine administrative duties for 30 days, police said.
The shooting comes a little more than a year after a Chicago police officer fatally shot another 13-year-old, Adam Toledo, during a foot chase in Little Village. In that instance, leaders of the Civilian Office of Police Accountability also initially said they could not release video of the shooting — though they eventually released it amid public pressure.
Video of his shooting — which showed Toledo had a gun, though he dropped it less than a second before an officer shot him — garnered national attention and led to protests in the city. Prosecutors eventually announced they will not pursue charges against the officer who shot Toledo.
The Chicago Police Department updated is foot chase policy after the shooting of Toledo, but critics have said it still largely allows foot chases that can lead to danger for those being chased and for officers.