Chicago (CBS) — Driver Tim Nutter pulled out his phone and captured the last of three shots fired by Elmwood Park police overnight. Then he ducked.
“It was scary, once you hear gunshots it was kind of surreal. I didn’t know what to think.
It all started with a traffic stop by Franklin Park police. But after the driver was pulled over, he took off. Franklin Park police made the decision to terminate the pursuit, but when the car reached Elmwood Park, officers there started tailing him.
When an officer attempted to make a stop at Grand and Harlem, the danger intensified.
Nutter says he watched as the driver reversed and then drove up the curb towards the officer standing outside. That’s when police started firing shots.
The driver wasn’t hit, and it turned out he was unarmed. But Elmwood Park police said the shooting was justified because the suspect was putting the officers’ lives in danger.
But the drivers in the surrounding intersection were also put in a vulnerable spot.
Elmwood Park’s police chase policy lists “hazards to uninvolved bystanders or motorists” as a factor for terminating a pursuit. Elmwood Park’s police chief said officers acted appropriately.
“It was dangerous I mean all around,” Nutter said. “Thank God no one got hurt.
Police chased the suspect to Belmont and Harlem in Chicago where he crashed into a pole and a park bench.
Finally, he was taken into custody at Nottingham and Barry.
At last check, charges had not been filed against the suspect. Police said they have dash cam video but are not releasing it at this time.
Elmwood Park’s police chief says this is the first time an officer in his department has discharged his or her weapon in about 20 years.