‘Hearts of Every Chicagoan Are Heavy': CPD Commander Fatally Shot at Thompson Center

CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said the commander was assisting a tactical team was "shot by an assailant"

A high-ranking commander in the Chicago Police Department was fatally shot multiple times while confronting an armed offender at the James R. Thompson Center Tuesday afternoon, police said. 

Commander Paul Bauer was was "senselessly murdered today while safeguarding Chicago," according to Chicago Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi.

Bauer was at the building in the 100 block of West Randolph Street in Chicago's Loop when he saw a man who matched the description of an offender wanted by tactical officers in the area, police said. 

The tatical officers had moments earlier approached a man they said was "acting suspicious" when an armed confrontation ensued. 

The man escaped from the tactical officers, who then put out a description of the wanted man.

Bauer noticed a man matching that description, and when he approached, there was an argument, according to reports, and Bauer was shot multiple times.

A spokesperson from the Thompson Center said there was a discussion between two people before the shooting happened. One witness said he saw two men arguing before he heard as many as five shots. 

Bauer was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, but he did not survive, according to Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson.

"Unfortunately Commander Bauer passed away," a visibly emotional Johnson said at a news conference just two hours later. 

"Today is an extremely difficult day for the Chicago Police family," Johnson said.

The suspect was taken into custody and a weapon was recovered from the scene, according to police. 

"I just ask the entire city for your thoughts and prayers," Johnson said. "Any loss of life in this city is tragic, this one is difficult." 

Bauer had a wife and daughter, Johnson said. 

"The hearts of every Chicagoan are heavy as we mourn the loss Commander Paul Bauer," Mayor Rahm Emanuel said in a statement. "Commander Bauer stood for the highest ideals of our police department and our city - to serve and protect the people of Chicago. His death is a tragic reminder of the dangerous duty the men and women of our police department accept to ensure the safety of us all. I ask every Chicagoan to keep Commander Bauer, his family, his friends and the entire Chicago Police Department in their thoughts and prayers during this difficult time."

Many of those who worked with Commander Bauer say he improved the 18th district under his leadership. Although they believe the replacement will be equally as good, they say that commander Bauer is irreplaceable. From River Northside, NBC 5’s Christian Farr reports.  
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