Sunday, August 12, 2012

Off-duty CPD officer kills attacker in Maywood -

Off-duty CPD officer kills attacker in Maywood -

An off-duty Chicago police officer shot and killed a man in west suburban Maywood Saturday after the officer crashed his motorcycle trying to avoid running into the man's daughter, according to officials.

The officer was on a northbound motorcycle heading home about 10 p.m. after his shift in a West Side police station and saw a 4-year-old girl dart into the street in the 1100 block of South 1st Avenue, authorities said.

The officer ditched his bike but the bike hit the child and her 18-year-old cousin. The girl's father, 26-year-old Christopher Middleton, approached the officer yelling and screaming, authorities said. He was inside a nearby restaurant when the accident happened, said Larry Shapiro, a spokesman for the village of Maywood.

The officer identified himself, said Shapiro and Pat Camden, Fraternal Order of Police spokesman. Camden said the officer told Middleton to calm down.

Middleton said he "didn't give a (expletive)" and punched the officer in the face, authorities said. Another person hit the officer in the back of the head.

The girl's 18-year-old cousin, who ran into the street after the girl and was holding her hand when she was hit, also kicked the officer while he was on the ground, Shapiro said.

The officer removed his weapon and fired once, hitting Middleton in the groin, Shapiro said. Camden said the officer felt he was near losing consciousness and fired at Middleton in defense of his life.

Middleton died at Loyola University Medical Center just before 10:30 p.m., a spokesman for the Cook County medical examiner's office said. He lived in the 500 block of South 2nd Avenue in Maywood, the spokesman said. The 18-year-old is being held for questioning, Shapiro said.

The 4-year-old girl was taken to Loyola hospital for observation with bruises and contusions, Camden and Shapiro said. Camden said the officer's decision to bail from the bike prevented a head-on collision.

The officer is at Loyola hospital with bruises and also was held overnight for observation, Shapiro said. Camden said the officer dislocated a shoulder and may have had broken bones but Shapiro said that wasn't accurate.

Larry Merritt, a spokesman for the Independent Police Review Authority, said his preliminary understanding of the incident matched Camden's.

Twitter: @peternickeas


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