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Officer’s gun taken in fatal shooting in Chicago: Sources

Chicago Police Department

(CHICAGO) —  A Chicago police officer who was gunned down Sunday outside his home after returning from his shift had his gun taken from him as well as his car in the attack, ABC station WLS reported Monday.

The slain 30-year-old officer, Luis M. Huesca, was shot multiple times in the Gage Park neighborhood on the southwest side of Chicago, police superintendent Larry Snelling said during a news conference Sunday.

Huesca was still in his uniform when he was fatally shot, Snelling said. He was killed two days shy of his 31st birthday, the superintendent said.

Citing multiple sources, WLS reported the officer’s gun was taken after he was shot. The Chicago Police Department has not yet confirmed the report.

No arrests have been announced and investigators were working Monday to identify a suspect or suspects in the killing.

Snelling said the officer’s vehicle, a gray 2018 Toyota 4runner with Illinois plates, was also taken in the incident.

Chicago Alderman Ray Lopez — who represents Chicago’s 15th Ward, which includes Gage Park — told WLS that police found a car matching the description of Huesca’s vehicle in an alley about a mile from where the officer was discovered suffering from multiple gunshot wounds.

“The vehicle found in the alley here, we believe it is the officer’s,” Lopez said. “If this was a carjacking, there might be evidence inside.”

Chicago police did not comment Monday on the recovered vehicle.

Snelling said on Sunday that detectives are working to determine if the officer was killed during a carjacking.

“We can’t confirm that right now, but detectives are working through it. What we do know is that the officer’s vehicle was taken,” Snelling said. “But to get to the total motive of what happened, we need more information and the detective division is working on that.”

But John Catanzara, president of the Fraternal Order of Police Union in Chicago, suggested in a video statement that Huesca was the victim of a carjacking.

“They had to execute him because he was a Chicago police officer and they didn’t want to get caught,” Catanzara said in the video. “If they will do that to a Chicago police officer (why) does anybody think the average citizen stands a chance in any of these situations because you do not.”

The shooting unfolded around 2:53 a.m. Sunday on West 56th Street near South Kedzie Avenue in the Gage Park neighborhood, according to a police statement. Officers responding to a gunshot detection alert found the mortally wounded officer lying outside on the ground suffering from several gunshot wounds, according to the statement.

Snell said Huesca, a six-year veteran of the CPD, was in his uniform, but with a jacket over it at the time he was shot.

“Our officer was headed home after his tour of duty,” Snelling said. “While returning home, the officer was shot multiple times.”

Huesca was shot outside his home, WLS reported.

According to police radio transmissions of the incident provided by Broadcastify.com, witnesses saw a brown Jeep Cherokee speeding from the scene of the shooting.

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson said Huesca worked in the police department’s 5th District as a member of the Priority Response Team. Snelling said the officer is survived by his mother and an uncle.

It was the second time in less than a year that an officer from the 5th District was shot to death under similar circumstances.

On May 6, 2023, officer Aréanah Preston had just finished her shift and was still in uniform when she was shot and killed while on her way home at about 1:42 a.m., according to Chicago police. Preston’s gun was also taken after she was shot, police said.

Four teenagers have been charged in the murder of 24-year-old Preston, according to court documents.

The four suspects “were out looking for victims” that night and are believed to be connected to multiple robberies and a car theft in the hours leading up to Preston’s killing, police said.

Meanwhile, a video emerged of a tribute Huesca gave last year for officer Andres Vasquez-Lasso, 32, who was fatally shot on March 1, 2023, also in the Gage Park neighborhood. Vasquez-Lasso was killed after exchanging gunfire with a man who was allegedly chasing a woman down the street with a gun, police said.

“Whether it was at work or outside of work, he could take the time to help others. He’s one of those guys that actually deserved this star. He’s very proud to wear this star,” Huesca said of Vasquez-Lasso in the video.

Huesca added, “I hate injustices and lawlessness as well. That’s why I became a cop.”

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