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Man With Death Wish Shot Inside Vernon Hills Police Station

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UPDATED: 4/3/2013 10:03 a.m.

CHICAGO (CBS) — A police officer in Vernon Hills shot a man inside the lobby of the police station early Wednesday, and, in a strange twist, the man may have been trying to get himself killed.

Police have since learned that Howard Lazarus of Mundelein said he was dying of cancer and went to the police station with a gun in the hopes that police would fatally shoot him.

Howard Lazarus has been charged with aggravated assault. (Credit: Vernon Hills Police)

Howard Lazarus has been charged with aggravated assault. (Credit: Vernon Hills Police)

According to police, a hand-written note was found in the suspect’s pocket that stated: “I apologize for placing your officers in this position. I am dying from cancer and couldn’t do the deed myself.”

Lazarus entered the station, 740 Lakeview Parkway, shortly after midnight and met an officer in the lobby, saying he wanted to file an accident report.

He then suddenly drew a handgun and aimed it at the officer, who drew his service weapon and shot the suspect at least once, Vernon Hills police officer Sharon Joseph said.

The suspect’s weapon was a metal, 9mm semi-automatic “replica gun,” police said.

Police recovered this weapon after the shooting. (Credit; Vernon Hills Police)

Police recovered this weapon after the shooting. (Credit; Vernon Hills Police)

Lazarus has been charged with one count of Aggravated Assault, a Class IV Felony.

He was reported to be in fair condition at a local hospital for non-life threatening injuries.

There is no evidence at this time that the suspect was involved in any sort of accident.

The police officer, who has been on the force for at least 12 years, has been placed on administrative leave, pending an investigation, Joseph said. That is department policy.

It was the first police-involved shooting in the 57-year history of the department.

Crime scene tape was wrapped around the police complex and the front door glass was shattered.

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