First Responders

Bloody Day for Law Enforcement in Midwest With 4 Officers Shot, 1 Dead

July 9, 2021Joshua Skovlund
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Four law enforcement officers were shot and one was killed in two incidents Wednesday — one in Chicago, and the other about three hours away in Terre Haute, Indiana. One Chicago police officer and two agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives were ambushed Wednesday morning in Chicago, and a 30-year veteran of the Terre Haute police department was shot and killed outside the city’s FBI field office later that day.

There are no indications the shootings are related.

In Indiana, Detective Greg Ferency was “ambushed” shortly after exiting the field office in downtown Terre Haute, Paul Keenan, FBI Indianapolis special agent in charge, said in a statement. The 30-year-veteran officer of the Terre Haute Police Department had been assigned to an FBI task force since 2010

An FBI agent shot and wounded the suspected gunman, who is now in federal custody while being treated at a local hospital. The FBI is leading the investigation into the shooting, which it is considering an “assault on a federal officer resulting in death,” Keenan said.

Earlier Wednesday, in Chicago, two ATF agents and a Chicago cop, all assigned to an anti-weapons task force, were driving north on Interstate 57 in an unmarked car when a shooter opened fire from another vehicle, according to police. ABC 7 reported that the officers had been following a suspect when they were shot at. One ATF agent was shot in the hand, the other in the side of the torso. The Chicago police officer sustained a graze wound to the back of the head. All three are in stable condition, according to the Chicago Police Department

The incident marks the 36th time one of the city’s officers has been shot at in 2021 and the ninth time an officer has been hit, according to the CPD.

Police later arrested a man on Chicago’s South Side and searched a home believed to be connected to the shooting.

“This is a very challenging time to be in law enforcement, but they are rising to the challenge, doing all they can,” Chicago police Superintendent David Brown said. “Really, the work that they do is extremely dangerous. God bless Chicago police officers that do this job in the bravest, most courageous ways with their commitment and dedication on display every single day.”

The ambushes continue a deadly trend for police reaching back through 2020. So far this year, police have been in a shootout with armed children who pinned down sheriff’s deputies in Florida, ambushed on several occasions, and in some cases gunned down during traffic stops. 

The National Law Enforcement Officer Memorial Fund’s preliminary 2021 LEO fatalities report shows that 131 officers have been killed in the line of duty, meaning 2021 is roughly on pace to match 2020’s 264 officers who died in the line of duty. The 2020 count was nearly double that of 2019, in which 135 officers died in the line of duty, according to the group.

Read Next: WATCH: Last Standing Section of Miami Condo Brought Down With Explosives

Joshua Skovlund
Joshua Skovlund

Joshua Skovlund has covered the 75th anniversary of D-Day in France, multinational military exercises in Germany, and civil unrest during the 2020 riots in Minneapolis that followed the death of George Floyd. Born and raised in small-town South Dakota, he grew up playing football and soccer before serving as a forward observer in the US Army. After leaving the service, he earned his CrossFit Level 1 certificate and worked as a personal trainer while earning his paramedic license. He went on to work in paramedicine for more than five years, much of that time in the North Minneapolis area, before transitioning to a career in multimedia journalism. Joshua is married with two children. His creative outlets include Skovlund Photography and Concentrated Emotion, where he publishes poetry focused on his life experiences.

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