CHICAGO — A man who allegedly fired shots at Chicago Police officers in Englewood was ordered held without bail Tuesday, as Cook County prosecutors told a judge the officers on scene had not yet been given body cams.
In bond court Tuesday, a Cook County judge had set bail at $1 million for Latrell Allen, charged with two counts of attempted murder for allegedly shooting at Chicago Police officers Sunday afternoon.
Assistant State’s Attorney Jim Murphy said the new charges violate Allen’s probation from pleading guilty to felony burglary in 2019. The judge agreed and ordered the 20-year-old held in custody.
Allen’s case has drawn protests from activists and community members who said police were not justified in shooting him. They’ve also questioned why none of the officers involved in the case were wearing body cams.
Prosecutors said in court the officers were part of a newly-formed community policing unit that hasn’t been equipped with the cameras.
Late Monday, the Civilian Office of Police Accountability also said officers weren’t wearing body cams and asked members of the public to come forward with any video of the shooting.
Allen is currently being treated at University of Chicago Hospital after being shot in his cheek and abdomen, an Englewood (7th) District officer said Tuesday.
Assistant Public Defender Scott Finger, who said he has been unable to talk to his client or his family, said Allen said he was shot five times.
“The main point here is that there’s no body cameras on any of these officers,” Finger said. “In 2020 they can’t get cameras on these officers? I think there’s an expectation that every officer have a camera in this case.”
The incident began around 2:30 pm. Sunday in Moran Park at 57th Street and Racine Avenue, Murphy said.
Four uniformed officers in an unmarked police SUV responded to a call from a someone saying a man with a gun wearing a red shirt and red hat was “trying to fight and would not leave the park,” prosecutors said.
Allen was with two other men or boys when police drove up to him with their lights activated, prosecutors said. Allen looked at the SUV before turning and running east on 57th Street and then north on May Street.
Three officers got out of their SUV and pursued Allen on foot. The fourth officer drove to 56th Street and parked before joining the chase.
Prosecutors said the officer closest to Allen saw him pull out a gun as he ran southbound into an alley. Then a second officer joined in and Allen “turned and fired multiple shots up the alley at both victim officers,” Murphy said.
Two officers returned fire, striking Allen, and he fell to the ground briefly before getting up and continuing to run through a vacant lot towards Aberdeen, Murphy said. The officers lost sight of Allen but followed a trail of blood into a residence in the 5600 block of South Aberdeen.
A short time later, a relative from that home called 911 to report Allen was shot, Murphy said. Officers entered the home and took Allen into custody.
Officers later recovered a gun from the alley near where Allen fired, Murphy said. Police recovered eight shell casings from where they said Allen shot at the officers, and 13 casings from where police opened fire.
Finger did not say whether Allen fired shots.
“All recovered casings were 9mm but were distinctly different in appearance. Those from the officer’s guns were newer, silver police-issued and those from the defendant’s gun were older and copper colored,” Murphy said.
Finger criticized the prosecution’s case, saying in addition to no body cam footage, authorities haven’t presented any forensic evidence from the scene or any witnesses who claim to have seen Allen with a weapon before the police chase.
“At this time, there are no firearms results, there’s no DNA results, there’s no latent print results,” Finger said. “One thing I didn’t hear the state mention was the gunshot residue swab. Why didn’t they swab his hands?
“This is a case where they are alleging that they justifiably shot him because he shot at them and they didn’t swab his hands. … I believe there are some questions to be answered.”
In July, Allen was charged with misdemeanor reckless conduct and child endangerment and is scheduled appear in court on the case Aug. 14, Murphy said. Additionally, Allen served 18 months probation after a felony battery conviction in February 2017, according to Murphy.
Allen is next due in court on the attempted murder charges Aug.13.
After Allen was shot Sunday, social media posts spread saying police had shot and killed a child. Police Supt. David Brown said social media posts later were shared encouraging to loot Downtown.
Soon, hundreds of people went Downtown and caused a night of destruction and looting, forcing the city to shut down a large section of the area.
Community leaders and activists said police could have done more to diffuse the situation by providing more information about the shooting from the beginning. It wasn’t until the day after the looting that police and city leaders, in response to the false information, finally confirmed Allen was 20 years old and had survived the shooting.
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