Lake Shore Drive standoff ends, suspect in custody

The southbound lanes of Lake Shore Drive reopened after an eight-hour standoff with a murder suspect.
March 16, 2014 9:10:26 PM PDT
An eight-hour standoff on Lake Shore Drive ended peacefully on Sunday evening after police took a suspect into custody following a pursuit and crash in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood. PHOTOS: Police chase, standoff closes Lake Shore Drive

Around 9:30 p.m., SWAT teams swarmed the vehicle and pulled the suspect out, where he was handcuffed and put on a stretcher to a waiting ambulance. He was transported to Northwestern Memorial Hospital. The southbound lanes of Lake Shore Drive were reopened as of 10:45 p.m. Sunday, but the northbound lanes remained closed as investigators worked to clear the scene.

Police chase, standoff closes LSD for hours

The police pursuit began just after noon on Sunday in south suburban Harvey, where sources say police were helping to apprehend Joseph Felton Jr., a murder suspect from Georgia. Police pursued his car up the Dan Ryan to Lake Shore Drive, where a crash occurred that injured a Chicago police officer just before the standoff began.

Felton was holed up in his damaged vehicle for over eight hours on a grassy area east of Lake Shore Drive, just north of the Theater on the Lake. Police tried a variety of tactics to get him to surrender, including a loudspeaker saying things such as "Pick up your phone," "It's getting cold out," and "You need to come out."

Lastella Felton and other family members came in close as they could to the scene in hopes of talking to Felton in person.

"Well I spoke to him over here on Lakeshore Drive, and he's not making sense. He can't really talk in complete sentences, he's just yelling and screaming," said Lastella Felton, suspect's sister. "I guess that if he saw one of his sisters, maybe he would come out. Look at the situation here, look at all the armored tanks and stuff, I would probably stay in, too. But if I saw a friendly face, I would be like, OK, maybe it's gonna be OK."

Standoff centers on man wanted for wife's murder

Harvey police said they located 43-year-old Felton, thanks to GPS information provided by police in Georgia, who called just before 12:30 p.m. Sunday requesting their help. Felton's wife was found dead inside the couple's home on Sunday. The police chase started in south suburban Harvey at 148th Street and Myrtle, just one block from the suspect's childhood home.

"Family was worried and went to check up on her. When they couldn't get in, they forced their way inside," said Sgt. Joey Smith, Hampton, Ga. Police Dept.

Police say Felton and his wife, Sheray-Mays Felton, moved from University Park, Illinois to the suburbs of Atlanta back in November. In January, police were called to their home and Felton arrested as a result of a domestic incident. In University Park on Sunday, former next door neighbor Abdul Mahdi says in the two years they lived here police came knocking on his door twice after being called out by Felton's wife.

"Two times. Obviously they had been fighting. She probably told the police he didn't live there. So they wanted to know, I told them I saw him on a regular basis. I don't know their domestic issues," said Mahdi.

While Felton still has family in Chicago, why he was in Harvey on Sunday is not known. A former friend of the family tells ABC7 tonight they've been gone for years-- the family home foreclosed upon after the parents' death. Meanwhile, police in Georgia will not reveal the way in which Felton's wife was killed, but say they are confident he is their man.

"There was enough evidence at the scene to lead us to obtaining a charge for murder," said Sgt. Smith.

The Chicago Police officer injured in this pursuit and crash is in good condition at Advocate Illinois Masonic Hospital in Lakeview, fire officials said.

Standoff creates traffic nightmare on North Side

The standoff was creating a traffic nightmare on Lake Shore Drive, where the southbound lanes were closed from Belmont to North Avenue, and the northbound lanes were closed from Monroe to Belmont. Drivers are being asked to avoid the area if possible. The southbound lanes of Lake Shore Drive were reopened late Sunday night.

Ald. Michele Smith, 43rd Ward, says the following locations have also been closed: Lincoln Park, Peggy Notebaert Nature museum, and area bike and running trails. A Lincoln Park Zoo official says the zoo is open.

"We wanted to abandon the car several times and run, we could have walked at this pace to get where we were going and back. It's really crazy, and people are running all the lights because there's no way to get through them," said Greta Giesen, motorist.

Giesen said her trip from Dearborn and Division to Belmont and Lake Shore Drive normally takes 20 minutes, but on Sunday, it took her an hour and a half.


Load Comments