Kankakee shooting: 2 killed, 1 wounded in 'targeted' incident near courthouse

ByChuck Goudie and ABC 7 Chicago Digital Team, Ross Weidner WLS logo
Friday, August 27, 2021
2 killed, 1 wounded in 'targeted' incident near Kankakee courthouse
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Kankakee authorities said a shooting near the county courthouse has left two people dead and another person injured.

KANKAKEE, Ill. (WLS) -- Two people were killed and another person injured in a shooting near the Kankakee County Courthouse Thursday morning, Kankakee County Sheriff Mike Downey said.

Kankakee police said they responded to a report of shots fired on Merchant Street near the courthouse at about 9:45 a.m.

According to investigators, a trio of men walked out of the courthouse and were shot at by a fourth man. One of the men under attack then grabbed a gun from his nearby car and fired back at the original gunman.

Police said a running gun battle led to the original attacker getting shot and killed, as well as one of his victims. Authorities said the third person shot is now out of custody.

"The mere fact that all these individuals will come to a courthouse where obviously disputes are supposed to be resolved civilly in the courthouse to shoot these individuals that they had some type of beef, it's, I think it just shows what's going on nationwide right now," said Kankakee Police Chief Robin Passwater. "That there's, there's no, no respect for other human life, and there's a complete disregard for law enforcement."

Police said the man who fired back at the original attacker was arrested on scene without incident. A second person who was arrested at the time was not connected to the attack, police said.

Police said they believe the shooting was gang-related and targeted, and multiple guns were recovered from the scene.

City officials had reported there was an active shooter. The Kankakee County Sheriff later announced that the scene was secure.

'Cops just started pouring out of the courthouse,' Kankakee shooting witness says

The sheriff said no officers were injured and they did not fire any shots. The shooting occurred south of the courthouse near the jail, he said.

At a press conference Thursday afternoon, police said they continue to investigate and interview witnesses. They said there is no reason to believe that there is a threat to the community.

Attorney Eric Davis said he was in the courthouse when he heard gunshots and saw a person lying dead on the street and another in a parking lot.

"Cops just started pouring out of the courthouse," Davis said. "They did a great job of securing the scene."

Kankakee announced the closure of city buildings as a precaution. All Kankakee School District 111 schools were placed on lockdown as a precaution.