NORTH RIVERSIDE, Ill. – Police shot a man suspected of attempting to rob a nearby bank inside the Burlington Coat Factory next to the North Riverside Mall Tuesday afternoon, reported ABC7Chicago.
“It just feels very surreal. It especially felt surreal when it was happening,” said Colin Weaver, a witness to the incident.
Around 12:30 p.m., the North Riverside Police responded to an attempted bank robbery at a TCF Bank in the 7200-block of West 24th Street. Upon arrival police indicated the suspect pointed an object at them and then ran into the Burlington Coat Factory, pointing the same object at them along the way.
Police said once officers caught up with him inside the store, the suspect grabbed an elderly man and held him at knifepoint to use him as a human shield. According to the police, the hostage resisted and pulled away from the suspect providing an opening for the officers to take a shot.
“I heard a couple people, like, gasping in surprise. And then I hear a bunch of voices yelling, ‘Get down on the ground! Get down on the ground! Get down on the ground!'” Weaver said.
The suspect, a 41 year-old resident of Chicago, was taken to Loyola Hospital for treatment. His condition is unknown. Police said no bystanders or officers were injured during the confrontation.
“They kept saying, “Get down! Get down!” I’m like, okay, who’s saying that? I’m looking around, but it was downstairs. And then when they started shooting, I’m like who cares. I’m gone. So we ran and hid in the employee’s lounge,” said another witness Alfreda Wells.
“What we had involved today was an officer-involved shooting that occurred earlier this afternoon. It is currently under investigation as we speak right now, so I have limited information I can give you all. And at this particular time, we have no comment because of the ongoing investigation,” said Sgt. Dion Bobo of the North Riverside Police Department.
Illinois State Police Public Integrity Task Force, which investigates officer-involved shootings, took over the shooting investigation as of 6 p.m. according to ABC7Chicago.
“It’s frightening. For all I knew it was a mass shooting situation, so I was really … that was my biggest fear, because there were lots of families and small kids in there and stuff, too,” Weaver said.
The FBI is aware of the incident and said they will continue to investigate with the local police department.