Family Questions Police Account in Forest Park Officer-Involved Shooting

The family of a man shot and killed by a Forest Park police officer held a press conference at his wake Wednesday night.

A Forest Park officer feared for his life, police said, when he shot and killed Marco Gomez in Oak Park last Friday. Police say Gomez was driving a stolen car and accelerated toward the officer when he was fatally shot.

But Gomez’s family and their lawyer say there are conflicting narratives and are demanding more information.

The shooting occurred near the intersection of Jackson Boulevard and Harlem Avenue about 6:20 p.m Friday.

Forest Park police Deputy Chief Mike Keating said the vehicle was reported stolen out of Glendale Heights. He said it was involved in a hit-and-run in Chicago. It was spotted by Chicago police officers near West Adams Street and South Central Avenue headed into Oak Park, Keating said.

A Forest Park police officer saw the vehicle stop at a nearby traffic light, according Keating.

“The vehicle turned back eastbound on Jackson in an attempt to elude the officer,” Keating said. “As the Forest Park Officer approached the vehicle on foot, the suspect vehicle began driving towards the officer, who was in front of the vehicle.”

Keating said the officer feared for his life and shot into the moving vehicle “striking the suspect,” who was later pronounced dead.

A man whose apartment overlooks the stretch of Jackson Boulevard where the shooting occurred, said he heard five shots in rapid succession. He ran to his window to see an officer aiming his weapon at a silver sedan, he said.

“Saw the officer with his gun drawn, working his way around the car and yelling,” witness Michael De Luc said. “He opened the door, pulled the guy out, laid him on the ground right there.”

De Luc said police began performing CPR on the person pulled from the car. An ambulance that arrived on the scene left after about 10 minutes.

Jackson Boulevard east of Harlem Avenue was blocked off about 10: 15 p.m.

Oak Park, Forest Park and Illinois State police were all on scene.

“No details are available for release at this time as the incident is actively being investigated,” Illinois State Police Master Sgt. Jason Bradley said.

The ISP Public Integrity Task Force will be doing an independent investigation into the use of force, Bradley said.

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