By: Teresa Mull
“We were lucky enough to have a citizen on the street there’s who’s a concealed-carry holder, and [he] also engaged in gunfire,” a law enforcement officer said after an unnamed citizen aided police during a shootout in suburban Chicago.
The Chicago Sun-Times reported Cicero Police Officer Luis Duarte and his partner were attempting to make a routine traffic stop last Thursday “when … the man at the wheel got out and began firing an automatic weapon, hitting Duarte twice in the arm, once in the leg and once in the abdomen, officials said.
“The suspect kept running and shooting at the officers as Duarte and his partner returned fire, officials said. That’s when someone sitting in traffic on Cicero Avenue got out of his car and began shooting at the suspect as well,” the Times further reported.
“He got out and started helping the police, which is something I’ve got to be proud of,” Cicero town President Larry Dominick said of the citizen shooter.
The suspect was shot once, according to reports, and taken to the hospital in serious condition, while Duarte is reportedly in good condition following surgery for his multiple gunshot wounds.
Fox News reported the suspect’s weapon was recovered at the scene, but did not confirm whether the firearm is really an “automatic weapon” as the Times initially reported.
Illinois, it is worth noting, and Chicago specifically, have some of the nation’s strictest gun laws. The state prohibits open carry and requires concealed carry permit applicants to undergo at least 16 hours of firearms training. Citizens must obtain a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card to purchase a gun, and then must wait between 24 ad 72 hours to take possession of the weapon, depending on its classification.
Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner also signed a so-called “red flag” gun confiscation bill into law earlier this year, meaning police can seize people’s guns if they’re determined to be a danger.
Chicago gun stores are limited to specific regions of the city and are required to record firearms sales on video.
What’s more, “The city of Chicago has banned more than 150 types of guns,” Fox News reported recently. “This ban includes: semiautomatic handguns or rifles with a detachable magazine, semiautomatic rifles with a magazine that can hold more than 10 rounds and shotguns with a revolving cylinder.”
None of these gun control mandates have stemmed the violent tide that has engulfed the city in recent years.
“In 2015, there were 485 homicides in Chicago,” The Chicago Tribune reported in August. “A year later, the number of victims skyrocketed to 764. That was 58 percent more homicides and 43 percent more nonfatal shootings in 2016. Since then, the pace of gun violence has dropped, but it remains elevated from what used to be considered normal, and is far worse than in the nation’s two biggest cities.”
A man with a concealed-carry license was commended for coming to the aid of Cicero police who were engaged in a shootout with a man who shot and wounded an officer near the Stevenson Expressway, authorities said. @mitchtrout and @MHendricksonCST report.https://t.co/qjsYVB0AHr— Chicago Sun-Times (@Suntimes) September 14, 2018
Teresa Mull is editor of Gunpowder Magazine. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.