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Man shot dead at Jefferson Park Walgreens ID'd

Walgreens, Foster and Milwaukee, Jefferson Park (Sun-Times Media Wire)
February 4, 2014 9:51:51 AM PST
An off-duty police officer fatally shot an armed 56-year-old man who was attempting to rob a Walgreens store Monday in the Jefferson Park neighborhood on the Northwest Side, police said.

About 10:30 a.m., the suspect, Mark Garcia, entered the Walgreens in the 5200 block of North Milwaukee Avenue and announced a robbery, according to a statement from Chicago police.

The officer had observed a "frantic" cashier stuffing money into a bag, Fraternal Order of Police spokesman Pat Camden said. The officer's wife and kids were waiting in a car in the parking lot. Camden said the officer ordered the man, estimated at around 400 lbs., to kneel on the ground. After doing so, Camden said, the suspect told the officer he would not be taken into custody willingly, and the officer would have to shoot him. Camden said the suspect then reached for a gun in his pocket, and the officer shot him.

Garcia, who lived in the 5800 block of North Milwaukee, just blocks away from the store, was taken to Advocate Lutheran General Hospital in Park Ridge, where he died at 1:06 p.m., according to the medical examiner's office. No one else was injured.

The robber's weapon was recovered at the scene, and charges were pending Monday afternoon, police said.

Police suspect the robber may be responsible for several similar armed robberies that have occured recently in the area, Camden said.

The Independent Police Review Authority is investigating the shooting.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.


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