Officer shot, second pinned between cars during West Side traffic stop and ‘exchange of gunfire’ with suspect
A man is facing attempted murder charges after Chicago police say he injured two officers during a West Side traffic stop Monday. One of those officers shot and wounded the man, police said.
James Callion, 28, was charged with three counts of attempted murder, two counts of unlawful use of a weapon, one count of aggravated battery causing bodily harm to a police officer and one count of armed habitual criminal, the Chicago Police Department said in a news release Tuesday night.
The two officers are part of a tactical unit and were assigned to patrol the Harrison District on the West Side, which includes the Lawndale neighborhood, police said in a statement.
The officers “were conducting a traffic stop” in the 3000 block of West Polk Street, officials said. Authorities did not provide a description of the vehicle that was stopped, the reason for that traffic stop or additional information about any alleged infractions.
According to Chicago police, Callion who was in the vehicle that was stopped “drove the vehicle in the direction of the officers” as they approached the stopped car, “pinning an officer between the squad car and vehicle.” Officials said “an exchange of gunfire ensued,” during which “an officer and the (man) were both struck.”
Police did not say who fired their gun first or which of the two officers shot the man. The police shooting will be investigated by the Civilian Office of Police Accountability, or COPA, as is customary.
“Both officers were transported to an area hospital, where one of the officers (was) being treated for a gunshot wound to the hand and the other for an injury to the right leg. The officers are reported to be in fair condition,” according to the police statement. The officer who was shot has since been released.
Callion is set to appear in bond court Wednesday.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot reacted to the news Tuesday morning with a statement.
“Last night, two Chicago police officers were injured, including one shot, and the other seriously injured, while conducting a traffic stop in the 11th District. The Superintendent kept me updated and I was very relieved to hear that none of their injuries were life-threatening, and that a suspect was apprehended on scene,” Lightfoot said. “My family and I are sending them strength as they make their recoveries, and thank them along with all of the first responders who assisted last night for their courage and quick action during a chaotic and potentially deadly situation.”
Lightfoot called for serious charges and a high bond for the alleged offender. The mayor over the past year often has been critical of what she says is the role the low bonds play in seeing some defendants quickly recycled back onto the streets.
Court officials and others have downplayed that alleged factor in the city’s crime challenge.
The man in the vehicle in the Monday night incident was taken to “an area hospital in an unknown condition,” police said. A Chicago Fire Department representative said he was transported to Mount Sinai Hospital in serious condition, although they could not directly confirm it was the man police shot.
It wasn’t immediately clear whether anyone else had been in the vehicle when it was stopped.
Two weapons were recovered from the vehicle, according to Chicago police. Charges were pending Tuesday, authorities said.
The police statement referred additional questions to COPA, which police said will examine “the specifics of (the police shooting), including the comprehensive use of force investigation” with “the full cooperation of the Chicago Police Department.”
As is routine, the officers involved “will be placed on routine administrative duties for a period of 30 days.”
Check back for updates.
Chicago Tribune’s Stephanie Casanova and Madeline Buckley contributed.