The high-ranking Chicago police commander who was shot and killed at the Thompson Center Tuesday afternoon is being remembered as "one of the best men one can ever know."
Commander Paul Bauer, of the 18th District, was fatally shot by "an assailant while assisting a tactical team" at the Loop building, according to police.
He had been in the area when he saw a suspect who matched the description of a man wanted by First District tactical officers. He approached the suspect and an armed confrontation ensued, according to Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson.
Bauer, a 31-year veteran on the force, was shot multiple times and did not survive. The suspect was taken into custody and a weapon was recovered, police said.
"Today is an extremely difficult day," a visibly emotional Johnson said outside Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Bauer "stood for the highest ideals of our police department and our city - to serve and protect the people of Chicago."
"The hearts of every Chicagoan are heavy as we mourn the loss of Commander Paul Bauer," the statement read.
In an emotional statement, John Daley, who is on the Cook County Board of Commissioners and knew Bauer for several years, called his death "a great tragedy for the city."
Bauer was well know to downtown residents as the 18th District commander, hosting popular "coffee with the commander" stops around the area, with one scheduled for next Wednesday.
Prior to that, he worked as the longtime commander of the Chicago Police Mounted Patrol Unit and was a leader in the group that helped maintain crowds when the Chicago Blackhawks won the Stanley Cup in 2013.
That year, he spoke with NBC 5 about the night the city and fans erupted - a night he called "a long night."
“The hardest thing we do in our training is the rider can’t react,” Bauer said, “You are trying to transmit to that horse, it's not big deal.”
Bauer's fellow officers remembered him as an "awesome guy" who "liked being on the street and not cooped up."
Chicago's Office of Emergency Management tweeted that Bauer was a "great leader and friend to all who worked with him."
"He will truly be missed," they wrote.