Firefighter Critical After Shooting Union Rep Says Was Attempted "Suicide by Cop"

Firefighter shot just before 1 p.m. at 103rd and Pulaski in Mount Greenwood

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    Police were on the scene of an officer-involved shooting at 103rd and Pulaski on Thursday, July 11, 2013.

    In what a Chicago police union rep is calling an attempted "suicide by cop," a Chicago Fire Department employee was shot and critically injured by a police officer Thursday afternoon on the Southwest Side.

    The shooting happened just before 1 p.m. at 103rd and Pulaski in Mount Greenwood, according to police.

    FOP spokesman Pat Camden said officers got 911 call of a despondent man in black Ford. The call, from the man’s wife, said he was a firefighter on medical leave and might be suicidal.

    Officers located the car in the parking lot of a strip mall, and the man was lying in the driver’s seat. Officers could see he had a cell phone in one hand, but could not see the other, so they asked him to show his hands, Camden said.

    "When they asked to see his hands, he made sign of cross, then came out of vehicle in a combat position," Camden said.

    The man had his hands around a black object, which the officer thought was a gun, so he shot him, according to Camden. It turned out be the man’s wallet.

    Fire Department paramedics took the gunshot victim to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn in critical condition, according to Fire Media Affairs.

    "This is a classic case of suicide by cop, hopefully attempted suicide,” Camden said, adding the man “thanked one of the sergeants” as he was being put in the ambulance.

    The Cook County Medical Examiner’s office was aware of the shooting but said the victim was not dead as of 3:45 p.m., contrary to earlier published reports.

    Police News Affairs said there was "an incident involving police" at the Mount Greenwood location but did not immediately have further details.

    CTA buses were temporarily rerouted around 103rd Street in that area.