CHICAGO, IL – A veteran Chicago police officer is spending the July 4th holiday recovering after being shot multiple times by a convicted felon on Friday.
The officer, who has served 15 years with the Chicago Police Department, was wounded while responding to a domestic violence call in the Little Italy neighborhood, police said.
Police officer hospitalized after being shot https://t.co/NYy1q6xY4j
— Fox News (@FoxNews) July 1, 2022
The unidentified male officer was ambushed while trying to make his way to a home about 8:30 a.m. in the city’s Near West Side neighborhood, Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown said at a press conference Friday afternoon. Supt. Brown said:
“They were ambushed. This wasn’t a matter of police tactics, they were ambushed, clearly.”
“As officers arrived, they got on an elevator, went upstairs and as soon as they got off the elevator to go to the apartment they were fired upon by the offender.”
The suspect was later taken into custody and a gun was recovered at the scene, he added.
Brown told reporters that none of the responding officers discharged their weapons.
The officer was struck in the torso and multiple times in the arm, according to Brown.
Brown noted that a police officer with the University of Illinois at Chicago, who was monitoring the Chicago Police radio, transported the injured officer to Stroger Hospital in his squad car, “likely saving his life.” Brown said outside the hospital Friday:
“He’s recovering. We are asking prayers for this officer and his family and we are praying for a full recovery.”
The CPD has video footage of the incident and criminal charges are pending.
The incident is a reminder of “the difficulties and dangers” of working as an officer, Brown said. He noted:
“Being a police officer in this country hasn’t been more dangerous in decades.”
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who attended the press conference outside the hospital, had the right words to say at the moment, despite many of her policies being at the root of the crime and violence surge in the city she oversees.
Lightfoot addressed a rise in domestic violence crimes. She said:
“It is a huge public health and public safety issue, which we’re working diligently to address.
“But we have a long way to go as a society in understanding the danger to people in the household, the danger to our police, and the danger to ordinary residents when domestic violence happens inside of a household.”
No matter what she doth protest, @LoriLightfoot couldn't care lesshttps://t.co/Cqp8CZlRxH
— Ari Goldkind (@AriGoldkind) July 1, 2022
Lightfoot continued with her assurances that she understands the problems police face:
“Every single day, on every watch, brave men and women of the Chicago Police Department put on their uniform and their badge and go out to protect each and every one of us.
“We have to remember that officers every single day are risking their lives for our safety and today underscores that.”
Lightfoot said Friday’s incident is indicative of an “unbelievable increase in domestic violence-related homicides and shootings” in Chicago, noting that domestic-related homicides by firearm and nonfatal shootings have increased 125% since 2019.
“You never know what happens until you get on the scene, so we have to make sure we are addressing this surge.”
Supt. Brown said at least two other people were inside the apartment where the call originated, but no one else was shot.
The suspect, whom he identified as a convicted felon, was taken to a separate hospital for treatment for a wrist injury. Police said the suspect attempted to slash his wrists in the presence of police after he had shot the officer.
Welcome to Chicago: Routine traffic stop erupts into gunfight after driver ambushes police officers
June 14, 2022
CHICAGO, IL – Jerome Halsey was pulled over by Chicago Police Department officers for driving erratically at high speeds and non-working brake lights.
He turned into a dead-end street at a rapid pace, then attempted to back up, being blocked by an unmarked SUV.
Due to Halsey’s behavior, officers got out of their vehicle with their weapons unholstered, according to Assistant State’s Attorney, James Murphy.
And the entire thing was captured on surveillance video.
Video shows a Chicago police traffic stop became a shootout in the blink of an eye last weekend, leaving a cop and the driver hospitalized.https://t.co/kUrDth1zO0
— CWBChicago (@CWBChicago) June 14, 2022
Officer Erik Moreno, who was driving the pursuing vehicle approached the driver’s side of Halsey’s car. The door opened, the driver stepped out and opened fire on Moreno. He was struck three times, being hit in the shoulder, forearm and in the armpit area.
Officers returned fire, striking him in the chest and thigh. He is now recovering at Cermak Hospital in the Cook County jail.
Thankfully, Officer Moreno survived and recovered in an area hospital before being released.
Hundreds of officers line the sidewalk as Officer Erik Moreno is discharged from the hospital after being shot last week in the @ChicagoCAPS07 District. We are wishing him a speedy recovery at home. #CPDMediaCar. pic.twitter.com/aU6qc398et
— Chicago Police (@Chicago_Police) June 12, 2022
His bail was set at $1M and he was charged with attempted first-degree murder of a peace officer, aggravated battery of a peace officer, and aggravated assault of a peace officer.
But there is apparently more to Halsey’s story than him being alive or that he is facing charges of attempted murder of a police officer.
The 27-year-old had a weapons-related charge on his record.
As reported by CBS 2’s Tara Molina, on May 10, 2019, he was sentenced to one year of probation for a conviction on two counts of unlawful possession of a firearm. He petitioned to have that conviction sealed and expunged. But neither action was ever applied to his record, and the conviction is still present.
According to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office (CCSAO), Halsey did file for expungement on March 30, 2022, for the August 2019 conviction.
“[Defendant] had a prior gun case, 19CR0838301 which occurred on 5/10/19 and he was charged with two counts of Agg UUW No CCL. On 8/29/2019, [Defendant] pled guilty to an amended charge of Unlawful Use of a Weapon (720 ILCS 5/24-1(A)(4)) Class A misdemeanor and sentenced to 1 year probation. On 3/30/22, [Defendant] filed for expungement for the gun case. The record is unclear in the Clerks system as to what happened afterwards. However, [Defendant] had a valid FOID and CCL on the date of incident.”
The State’s Attorney’s office also stated:
“The case has not been expunged. The CCSAO filed an objection to the expungement and a hearing on the expungement is set for July 28th.”
But somehow, he managed to be in possession of a Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) and a concealed carry permit.
Let’s run through that again.
A man with a gun conviction was able to obtain a FOID and a concealed weapons permit.
A loophole. A state-created loophole.
“The FOID card has certain rules and regulations as to whether or not you can get one or whether it could be revoked,” said CBS 2 Legal Analyst Irv Miller, “and frankly, he slipped into a crack in the system.”
Miller detailed that Halsey was allowed to get and keep his FOID card because he was able to get his gun charge from 2019 downgraded to a misdemeanor. Convicted felons are unable to obtain the card, as are individuals convicted of battery, assault, aggravated assault, or violation of an order of protection in the past five years.
The only misdemeanor that has an impact on FOID status is domestic violence.
State law allowed Halsey to both obtain and maintain his ID.
“I would call it a loophole, but it was a loophole clearly designed by the General Assembly in posing this statute,” Miller added. “The fact that a person with a FOID card did these crimes doesn’t surprise me at all. It happens every day. I was a former prosecutor, defense attorney. I’ve seen all of this.”
Regardless of the status of Halsey’s gun ownership, the fact remains that he is alleged to have attempted to murder at least one officer in the act of this shooting.
If convicted, he faces a minimum sentence of anywhere from 45 years to natural life.
Want to make sure you never miss a story from Law Enforcement Today? With so much “stuff” happening in the world on social media, it’s easy for things to get lost.