Officers approached the woman after employees at a store thought she was trying to use a stolen credit card.
The incident began at the Louis Vuitton store in the 900 block of North Michigan Avenue. The woman was shot outside on nearby Walton Place.
Louis Vuitton employees suspected their customer was trying to buy a pricey purse using stolen credit cards and identification. Store security called police. That's when the woman is said to have fled to a getaway car idling around the corner. A pair of police officers confronted her there.
"There was a struggle where she eventually made it to a vehicle. She made it to the vehicle, at which point a shot was fired," said Chicago police department Cmdr. Eric Washington.
"A young woman, there was a car. Both doors were open. She was on the ground. The first thought was the worst, but then I could see her breathing," said witness Mike Marshall.
"Screaming and moaning. You couldn't understand what she was saying, but she was conscious. She lifted her head a couple of times. She was laying on her stomach," witness Andrea Cole said.
Officers swarmed an area unaccustomed to gunfire. That's when a man, believed to be the woman's accomplice, ran off trying to blend in to the crowd of Mag Mile shoppers.
" [A]ll of a sudden, undercover cops came out of nowhere, grabbed him and threw him up against one of those posts, and then quickly got him in their car," said Cole.
Police were interviewing the male accomplice Saturday evening. They would not comment on the woman's condition other that to say that she was hospitalized.
The two officers who responded to the scene initially sustained minor injuries and were also hospitalized Saturday evening for observation.