University of Illinois student had pellet gun when shot by police, called cops on himself

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WLS) -- A student at the University of Illinois was wounded in a shooting Thursday by U of I police officers and a Champaign County sheriff's deputy.

Police said they received a call about a man loading a semi-automatic handgun near John and Locust streets in Champaign.

Officers arrived on the scene and encountered an armed 23-year-old man matching the description from the call. Police said they ordered the man to drop the gun.

Police said after the man refused their order to drop the gun, three officers fired and struck the man in the leg. Police said the man is a student at U of I.

Police later determined the gun was a Beretta air pellet pistol, which they say closely resembled a real handgun.

The student was identified as 23-year-old Samuel Applebaum, from south suburban Flossmoor.

Applebaum's mother said he called police to the intersection himself. He could face criminal charges.

The officers rendered first aid to the student, who was then transported to a hospital. Police said the student's injury was non-life threatening.

No police officers were injured. The shooting is under investigation by Illinois State Police.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Copyright © 2021 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.