An off-duty Chicago police officer who was shot Monday in the city's Calumet Heights neighborhood was reported to be in fair condition and "doing well" following surgery, authorities said.
Details surrounding what happened weren't immediately clear but Chicago police spokesman Tom Ahern said the incident happened before 1 p.m. in the 8900 block of South Stony Island.
Police said the officer was stopped at a traffic light when two people came up beside his vehicle and started firing their guns at him, striking him in the "lower torso area."
"Officer stopped at a traffic light, off duty, in his personal car," Chicago Police Supt. David Brown said. "Offenders pull up behind him and beside him and just start firing into the car."
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The officer was taken to the University of Chicago Medical Center and rushed into surgery. He was said to be recovering from the procedure as of 4:30 p.m.
Dr. Susan Rowell, a University of Chicago Medicine trauma surgeon, said the officer sustained injuries to the small and large bowel and was "doing as best as can be expected."
Brown said the officer, who has been on the force for four years and works in the department's Fourth District, was alert when he was transported to the hospital.
Three tactical teams responded to the shooting from ShotSpotter alerts, found the officer and took him in their squad car to the hospital, Brown stated.
"In my opinion, without their intervention, quick thinking to get him transported as quickly as possible... got him into surgery, likely saved his life," the superintendent said.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who along with Brown met with the officer's family Monday afternoon, said "we have to give incredible praise" to the three officers who acted swiftly.
"Unfortunately this event reminds of the dangers our officers face every single day, whether on or off duty, and we just have to say a prayer for this officer and his family," the mayor said.
Police said an investigation into what happened was ongoing, but "circumstances suggest several different narratives of what this might be."
"Could be a misidentification, it could be road rage, could be carjacking we just don't know," Brown said. "It's too early to tell."
The shooting marks the second officer shot in the city in as many days.
A Chicago police officer was shot Sunday afternoon near the 6th District police station in the Gresham neighborhood on the city's South Side, authorities confirmed.
At approximately 2:30 p.m. the officer, a sergeant, was in a parking lot across the street from the station at 7808 S. Halsted St. when he heard a gunshot and sustained a graze wound to the face, according to Chicago Police Department Supt. David Brown.
The injured officer was initially listed in good condition at Advocate Christ Medical Center and released from the hospital late Sunday night.
The incident marked the first shooting of a Chicago police officer in 2021.
"This highlights the dangers of - although on yesterday, obviously, the officer was in uniform, today, this was an off duty incident- but it just highlights the dangers, Brown said. "We all need to be aware of our surroundings, and again, we need to have real consequences for offenders when we catch them is really my bottom line statement about things."
"[Police officers] have a very, very difficult job," Lightfoot said at an unrelated press conference moments after the shooting. "They're one of the few city employees that actually run towards danger, and we can never underestimate the difficulties or the stressors that they face every single day. They're providing assistance to our residents in our city at a time of their greatest need, and they're, as a consequence, seeing incredible trauma and stress."