Chicago police have apprehended five persons of interest in the shooting death of a 24-year-old officer who was killed steps from her mother’s doorstep Saturday morning after finishing a night patrol, according to law enforcement sources.
Four were taken into custody after a barricade situation at 76th and Bishop streets on Sunday night, about 5 miles from where Chicago Police Officer Areanah Preston was killed, a source told Fox News Digital Monday.
Charges were pending review by the state’s attorney’s office, which has 48 hours to file charges or release the suspects.
A spokesperson for Chicago police said they had no official updates and that the investigation was ongoing, but the department confirmed in a statement that its SWAT team had responded to an address on South Bishop Street around 10:30 p.m. Sunday.
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Individuals were taken into custody after an armed standoff there in connection with Preston’s murder, FOX 32 Chicago reported, citing another source.
It was not immediately clear whether the four suspected in the SWAT standoff are suspects in connection with the murder. A fifth person, a 19-year-old male, was taken into custody somewhere else, a source told Fox News Digital.
A neighbor of Preston’s told Fox News Digital on Monday that Preston lived in the South Blackstone Avenue home with her mother. Despite a wave of violent crime afflicting the city, he said his neighborhood, full of elderly residents and working people, had been spared until Saturday.
“They took a life, a life that didn’t have to be taken,” he said. “And whatever they were trying to get, it wasn’t worth it.”
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After the shooting, he said, he called a contractor to install a new security system and encircle his house with security cameras.
Preston’s murder came the day before thousands of city police officers marched in the St. Jude Parade in honor of their fallen colleagues.
Preston had served in the Chicago Police Department for three years in the Fifth District, authorities said.
Preston, after working a night shift, returned home around 1:45 a.m. Saturday, according to police. Around that time, police received an alert of shots fired on her block.
“Officers responded and found one of our own suffering gunshot wounds,” the department’s interim superintendent, Eric Carter, said during an emotional news briefing.
A responding officer rendered aid at the scene and rushed her to the University of Chicago Medical Center in the back of a squad car, he said. She succumbed to her injuries at the hospital – the same one where fellow Chicago Police Officer Ella French was taken.
“Right now, we ask that you keep the officer and her family in your prayers, as well as the men and women of the Chicago Police Department, who sacrifice everything, including their lives, on the line for this city every day,” Carter said.
According to the Fraternal Order of Police, Preston was shot while trying to defend herself from an armed robbery.
According to her Facebook profile, Preston had studied criminal justice and criminology at Illinois State University and went on to Loyola University in Chicago.
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The school said in a statement that she was expected to receive her master’s degree this weekend.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot called the shooting “awful and tragic” and said she had instructed police to “spare no expense” in hunting down the suspects.
“There are some who say that our police officers are not worthy of our respect,” she said. “There are some who say we should not be supporting and funding our police department. I would urge any person who holds that view to reflect on moments like this.”
Fox News’ Alexis McAdams contributed to this report.
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