Woodridge man arrested for 'randomly' firing shots into Englewood park: authorities

Alexander Podgorny was found with guns, 1K rounds of ammunition and notes about mass shootings, police said.

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Monday, August 8, 2022
Suburban man arrested for firing shots into Chicago park
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Woodridge, IL man Alexander Podgorny was arrested by Chicago police for "randomly" shooting into an Englewood park.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Community activists and residents have been reacting to the arrest of a man allegedly found near an Englewood park with several loaded weapons.

"The police department should have been canvassing this community, informing the neighborhood what's happening," said Troy Gaston of Black Lives Matter Chicago.

Police said they arrested 29-year-old Alexander Podgorny of Woodridge last Thursday after a Shot Spotter alerted them to a single round being fired near Moran Park

"If this happened up in Highland Park, it would be on the news each and every day of the week, sincerely. Just because this is a Black community, nobody appears to really, really care," said Tio Hardiman, of Violence Interrupters.

According to a police report, a city POD camera captured a man "firing what appeared to be a shotgun" into the park.

Police said a search of Podgorny and his minivan turned up a shotgun, three handguns, an AR-15 style semiautomatic rifle, hundreds of rounds of ammunition and a hatchet. The report said "all firearms were readily accessible and ready to be fired."

"Obviously he had weapons, a cache of ammunition that he fired randomly," said CPD Supt. David Brown.

"We don't know what could've happened. Was it a domestic terrorist threat going on in this community? Somebody tell us something," Gaston said.

In addition, police recovered a "large number of handwritten notes" that allegedly contained "incoherent rants about references to mass shooting events," the report said.

Podgorny was charged with five counts of felony unlawful use of a weapon, Brown said.

"We're told he's on electronic monitoring now," Brown said. "Likely, we're looking at other charges."

The Cook County Sheriff's office said Podgorny remained in custody on Tuesday. Brown said Podgorny was free after posting 10% of a $300,000 bond during Monday's press conference.