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Shooting and Hostage Situation in Chicago

Aired August 28, 2001 - 13:00   ET


LOU WATERS, CNN ANCHOR: We're dealing with -- this is Natalie Allen, and we're dealing with a tense situation in Chicago at the moment.

NATALIE ALLEN, CNN ANCHOR: That's right. it's a story we've been following for almost an hour now. It's in Chicago where there's been a shooting, and police say they are dealing with a hostage situation. There's no word on how many people have been shot: One, perhaps two, and no word on the victim's condition.

Local reports say an officer was serving a warrant at the time this all began. Now this entire area has been barricaded. The S.W.A.T. team has come in. Police are trying to talk a person out. Believed to be a suspected bank robber who may have hostages in this building. Many of the people in that building have been told to stay in their apartments while the situation is going on.

WATERS: We have on the phone with us, and we've been given much gracious support from Chicago area journalists. We have with us Larry Schreiner from WGN Radio, a reporter who is also a former police officer.

Larry, thanks so much. What are we dealing with here? Who is inside? Who is outside?

LARRY SCHREINER, WGN RADIO-REPORTER: Well, the law enforcement's outside, Lou. I was just told seconds ago it possible that they have a wounded Chicago police officer, should be coming out of that building momentarily. They've got what we call a lead car. They've already notified the trauma center just down the road, where he will be going.

This started about 10:15 when reportedly Chicago police, in conjunction with the FBI -- they work together here, Lou -- they were serving a warrant in this building on the third floor, apartment 301, when the shooting took place. Now, exactly what took place then is not known. But it appeared that the police officer was still in the apartment with the offender or offenders, possibly also other people inside.

The building has not been evacuated. The man is secured in that one room, he cannot come out. So there's no concern there. He was reportedly shooting towards Michigan Avenue before. They are trying to confirm that. But, the most recent news is that police officer should be coming out momentarily.

WATERS: Now, we've heard reports, Larry, that the suspect in question has members of his family with him inside that apartment?

SCHREINER: We know that the man is married and has two children under the age of 10. But, in a situation like this, Lou, it is very difficult to find out exactly who's inside that apartment, because you can't see inside that apartment.

Now, if somebody did get out of that apartment, a law enforcement person or a civilian, then they in fact would tell police. But it sounds like law enforcement entered, and whatever happened, happened inside that apartment, because of the wounded police officer was still inside that apartment. He was a hostage.

Police from outside the door kept saying to him, "it's not worth it, it's not worth it." They did bring in a trauma surgeon and a nurse from a local trauma center to be on the scene. In a negotiations like that you'd tell the man, let's at least get the guy -- the individual medical treatment. If you want to stay in there, we'll work about that later. You don't want to go down for murder. You just want to get that wounded person out, Lou.

WATERS: So, the situation now, Larry, whether or not the man has family inside with him or not, this man is cornered?

SCHREINER: He is. He can't go anywhere. He can't get out. I mean I'm not trying to -- he could jump out the window, possibly, but the place is surrounded. The term we use is "the area is secured." He can only shoot in certain directions, so that's why if the public sees any pictures they'll wonder why all these people are standing in front of the building. Because that are not in what we call a hot zone. They're not in the hot area. That cannot be shot.

The people would be in line of fire from that window, they have been moved, and there's no law enforcement people in that way. Also in Chicago -- at least I know I am -- you're very careful, because the guy could be listening to your radio station, Lou, or watching you on TV.

WATERS: Exactly.

SCHREINER: So, the area is secured, but it's still a standoff. As long as he has the hostage, he's in charge. Police probably would not try to make an entry unless something unforeseen and unfortunate happens.

WATERS: So, if there is a hostages and or hostages, out front, I would imagine, would be some hostage negotiator from either the police or the FBI. We understand this is a joint operation.

SCHREINER: Yes. They are talking through the door to the man. They are not sure, or if they are sure they are not telling us, exactly who is inside that apartment. The certain is to get the wounded officer out.

WATERS: And, again, because I can only assume we're talking to new audience here, we've had a change of anchor teams, a change of reporters from Chicago. Give us the top of the story once again. What's going on?

SCHREINER: Well, approximately 10:15 Chicago police, who work in conjunction in this area with the FBI, reportedly went to apartment 301 to serve a warrant, and/or to question a man in regarding some federal crime, presumably a bank robbery. Then the shooting took place. Now it's a standoff. And you just have to talk it out and wait, Lou.

WATERS: All right. Larry Schreiner who is with WGN Radio, a former police officer. We hope to talk to you again this afternoon, before this all is resolved. Natalie, what's next?

ALLEN: Our affiliate, another affiliate in Chicago is WGN, Lou, and they have just interviewed a man on the street who is a next door neighbor of the suspect in question in this story. So, we'll play that interview for you.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Crackers went off, but it turns out it was shooting. About a minute after -- well less than a minute after that I heard voices go, FBI. We have a man down, we need somebody up here. FBI.

Then they started talking with him -- to the person inside. They were calling him Dan. They were saying, Dan, let's -- come out, Dan, it's not worth it. We're not going to hurt you, come out. Then a little bit later they were saying, Dan, let the children out. We're not going to hurt them. It's not worth it. They're telling him that the place is surrounded. There is nowhere for him to go. He should come out, give himself up. Things like that.

As always, the FBI.

QUESTION, WGN REPORTER: Now, when you -- when they knocked on your door, what did they say?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Originally, I'd opened my door to let them know that they could use that, because the hallway is really short. They told me to close it, lock it and stay inside. About 10 or 15 minutes later they knocked on the door again. I opened it up and they said, throw on some pants and get out. Hurry up. Hurry up, you're in danger, get out. There was about five or six policemen in my apartment. They held me off to side. Then, I quickly stepped out the door and to the right, into a separate hallway. And I just left at that point.

QUESTION: Now, what can you tell us about this individual?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: I know nothing about him. He's only lived there for about a month. I saw them when they moved in. It's a family, the wife, the two young children. I think they were two young girls. Might have -- you know...

QUESTION: Under 10?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes. If they were the children that live with them, yes, that's who I saw.

QUESTION: Have you had any conversations with him?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: No, I haven't really seen him in the past month. You know, I don't know that I'd recognize him if I was on the street. You know, I've never heard anything from the apartment. They seem like a regular family.

QUESTION: OK. All right, Ross (ph), thank you very much for talking with us.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: You're welcome.

REPORTER: We're told that S.W.A.T. teams are also inside the building, on the floor. The FBI, we've seen men pass by with automatic weapons and...


ALLEN: Again, that was a taped interview recorded just a few moments ago from our affiliate WGN. Talking with a neighbor of the man who police are trying to talk out of that apartment.

As you heard from that interview, police did make reference, according to that neighbor, about children inside, but that still has not been confirmed. Let's listen in now to the police spokesman from Chicago.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE, CHICAGO POLICE SPOKESPERSON: I don't know where he's from. It's an ongoing situation. What I would ask is please be patient. And once this situation is resolved, we will let you know the details.

At this point it's ongoing operation. We do have the possibility of injured people in the apartment. We're trying to extricate them at this point. That's all the information I have right now ladies and gentlemen.

QUESTION: Is the suspect still inside at this point?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE, WGN-REPORTER: Again, a very dangerous situation. Residents are still inside. The apartment building that he is holed up in is in the back, in the hallway on the third floor. From what we understand, most of the people on that floor have been evacuated, but we've been looking at this apartment building.

I don't know if you can see it, but people have been hanging out over the terraces, still inside wondering what's going on. Whether they'll be able to leave. Many people we've talked to out here, many resident are wondering when they'll be able to go back. We have been told to get away from a certain area here on the street, because the ambulance could take off at anytime once this hostage situation is taken care of. They're very strict. They're telling us that we have to show our I.D. badges, because right now it is a very tense situation. As you hear Pat Camden (ph) say, an ongoing situation.

Of course, we will keep you posted. We are going to stay on the scene until this is taken care of. Reporting Live from 13th and Wabash in Chicago.

Mike and Matera, back to you.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE, WGN ANCHOR: And, to recap, we have some taped video from sky cam that we shot earlier. To be specific, 1307 is the scene of the...

ALLEN: That's our coverage from WGN. And the police spokesman going before reporters there in Chicago, saying the story is still going on. They're still trying to talk this man out of the apartment. And we're still waiting on word to confirm whether his wife and children, described as two children under the age of 10, are still with him.

This all started about three hours ago in Chicago when police went to question the man or serve a warrant, we're not sure about that, regarding an armed robbery. That's when the shooting started.

Still no confirmation on who has been shot and their condition. At first reports were that a policemen has been shot. That has now not been confirmed. So there are reports that one or two people have been shot. We don't know who they are or their conditions.

It's a story on Chicago's south neighborhood that we'll continue to follow here at CNN, and bring you any further developments.



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