Illinois State Police trooper released from hospital after being shot in Wheeling; 1 in custody

WHEELING, Ill. (WLS) -- A 32-year-old Illinois State trooper has been released from the hospital after being shot while serving a warrant Thursday night in northwest suburban Wheeling, police said.

Illinois State Police troopers responded to a residence in the 400-block of Hickory Drive in Wheeling at about 6:30 p.m. Thursday to execute an arrest/search warrant. The suspect was wanted for forcible detention, aggravated assault to a police officer and aggravated unlawful restraint related to a traffic stop on I-294 at about 1:30 a.m. on Thursday, police said.

Shots were fired at officers from inside the residence and a trooper was injured, police said. The trooper was transported to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries and was released Friday afternoon. The 32-year-old trooper is a five-year veteran of Illinois State Police.

A suspect is in custody and is being held pending charges, police said.

Neighbors watched the drama play out.

"Asked the police what happened and they told us gunshots were being fired and we had to go inside because they feared for our safety and stuff like that," said witness Christian Maldonado.

"They kept paging him to come out, 'come out.' He wouldn't come out and then there was some shots came from the inside to the outside," said witness Juan Bernal.

Residents watched as police moved in with snipers on rooftops.

"Said a prayer for the officers that hopefully this ends and ends quickly," said neighbor Mary Papantos.

Papantos shares a wall with the home police busted open.

"My house actually shook," she said. "First the door, then the windows, then the garage door."

Finally, police apprehended the man, but then residents said something raised enough alarm that police evacuated the street.

"The police started knocking on all of our doors that we needed to evacuate, and we are like why, and they are like, 'We found some stuff, you guys need to leave,'" Bernal said.

Bernal said he was allowed back home a few hours later, with clean up and the investigation continuing through the night.

SP Acting Director Brendan F. Kelly. said in a statement, "The men and women of the Illinois State Police again and again display bravery simply by doing the job they've sworn to do. This officer, and all first responders who responded today, showed uncommon valor in what is becoming an all too common situation. The officer and his family will be in our hearts during his recovery."
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