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Police chase on Eisenhower, Dan Ryan; 3 men shot

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Updated: March 20, 2014 6:28AM



Chicago Police fired shots on the Dan Ryan Expy. after one of three men inside a car allegedly pointed a gun at officers in broad daylight and surrounded by buzzing traffic Tuesday near U.S. Cellular Field, officials said.

The brazen event, which ended on the 35th Street ramp, left the men hospitalized in serious to critical condition with gunshot wounds.

The men, all in their 20s, were allegedly involved in a shootout about 11:30 a.m. near Hamlin and Ferdinand on the West Side, authorities said.

Harrison District police witnessed the shooting and allegedly saw the men get into a waiting white Kia Optima and flee. The men also allegedly fired shots at police, although no officer was injured.

A police chase began, and the men got onto the Eisenhower Expy., and then the Dan Ryan, police said.

When the vehicle reached 28th Street, a man in the back passenger seat allegedly pointed a 9 mm gun at officers, who managed to pull their unmarked vehicle next to the suspect’s car, Fraternal Order of Police spokesman Pat Camden said at the scene Tuesday afternoon.

“We do know for a fact he was pointing this semi automatic with an extended clip,” Camden said. “There’s no mistaking [the gun] . . . , you know what it is.

“They’re driving parallel to the car. The passenger in the rear seat raises this weapon with the extender clip and at the point the officers are defending themselves. Yes, they opened fire on them at that point.”

Camden acknowledged police fired shots on the Dan Ryan and again on the 35th Street ramp, where the vehicle exited the expressway, crashed into several vehicles and ultimately into a snow embankment.

“Officers get out of the car, and the man in the back seat points the weapon at them. They fire at them. They’re not getting out of the car, and the man raises his weapon up a third time, and more shots are fired,” Camden said.

All three men were taken to area hospitals in serious to critical condition, according to Fire Media Affairs. Camden said its unclear whether all three were shot by police or were injured in the earlier shootout.

The semi-automatic gun has been recovered. All three are in police custody.

The shooting jammed the eastbound Dan Ryan for hours Tuesday afternoon as police closed off the 35th Street ramp to investigate. Two southbound lanes also were closed between 31st and 35th streets.

Police taped off the ramp, as onlookers at the nearby CTA Sox-35th Street station snapped pictures and asked the officers about the shooting.

At the original West Side crime scene on Hamlin, police tape cordoned off a field, and a car was riddled with bullets a few blocks away. Linda Fleming, who has lived on the block for 15 years, said she came home to find a crime scene on her sidewalk.

“I came home [in the evening] to find the police still over there with all the red and yellow tape,” she said. “I was really surprised because it’s been quiet over here when it comes to shootings.”

Email: tsfondeles@suntimes.com

Twitter: @TinaSfon



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