connectVideo2 men arrested in the murder of off-duty Chicago police officer
Two men have been arrested for allegedly shooting and killing an off-duty Chicago police officer, because he was Hispanic.
The gunman who allegedly shot and killed by an off-duty Chicago police officer in the weekend apparently shot the “first Hispanic person he saw after a non-related fight at a nearby fast-food restaurant, the city’s top cop said Monday.
The Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said at a press conference that Menelik Jackson, 24, and Jovan Battle, 32, were searching the area after Jackson and another friend had a fight with a group of men outside the flagship McDonald’s restaurant in Chicago’s River North.
“In an act of cowardice, Mr. Jackson went to get a gun to this little dispute,” Johnson told reporters.
2 CHARGED IN FATAL SHOOTING OF OFF-DUTY CHICAGO POLICE OFFICER
The 24-year-old allegedly planned to shoot a member of the group that he had fought, but the men of the party bus had already left the area. So, Johnson said, Jackson decided on a different goal.
“I think that he is the first Hispanic he saw,” he said.
An hour after Jackson’s first fight with the already departed the men, a 23-year-old off-duty officer John Rivera was repeatedly shot while sitting in a car with three friends after a visit to the pizza bar in the neighborhood. Rivera, a two-year veteran and a patrol officer who had finished his shift an hour before, was shot in the chest, arm, and mouth. He was pronounced dead at the hospital.
Rivera’s friend, also 23, was taken to the hospital in critical condition, but is expected to survive. An off-duty Chicago cop and a female civilian were in the car, but were not injured, police said.
OFF-DUTY CHICAGO AGENT SHOT AND KILLED WHILE SITTING IN A PARKED VEHICLE, ANOTHER MAN SERIOUSLY INJURED
Officials announced Monday that the alleged gunman, Jackson, he was accused of murder and attempted murder, together with the Fight. Cook County Circuit Court Judge John Fitzgerald Lyke ordered the two men held without bond.
“Both men pose a real and present threat of the victims, the victims’ lives, in this case, this community and every other human being on the planet, which they come in contact with,” the judge said.
Jovan Battle, left, and Menelik Jackson were charged with first-degree murder in the off-duty Officer John P. Rivera ‘ s death.
(Chicago Police Department)
The fight had a meeting with Jackson and a third person to detect the group of the party bus fight, according to Assistant State Attorney James Murphy. He added that the security camera images showed Jackson pulls a gun and aim it at the drivers window of the car Rivera was. Before approaching the vehicle, the prosecutor said Jackson focused on the car Rivera was in several times for approaching the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
“Jackson is clearly seen on video pulling a gun and pointing [at] the driver’s window from a few feet away,” Murphy told the court. “The surviving victims [hear] from outside the car,” Let’s blow this b____h.'”
The prosecutors also depicted the shooting as a case of mistaken identity, according to the Sun-Times.
The fight had been arrested almost 50 times since 2005, while Jackson was still on probation from a domestic violence case, according to court records obtained by the Sun-Times. The Police Chicago police spokesman Anthony guglielmi said that when the police arrested Jackson, the officers used Rivera’s handcuffs to take him into custody.
Assistant Public Defender Christopher Anderson, who as a representative of a Battle, said that his client was denied the ability to call the police, add of the 32-year-old is unemployed and receives Social Security assistance for bipolar disorder and depression. Jackon’s legal representative, his Lawyer, Robert Willis, said that his client has an associate’s degree and is working on a special car parts store.
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Researchers are still looking for the third man, who was with Battle and Jackson during the shooting, Johnson said.
Rivera was a Chicago officer for almost two years.
“John is a sweetheart. He is an angel,” a friend of Jennifer Navarro told the Associated Press. “Why would someone who only wants his life away? He had a whole life before him.”
Fox News’ Lucia Suarez and the Associated Press contributed to this report.