News Release from Chief Mark J. Becker, East Chicago Police Department:
At approximately 11:25pm on February 19, 2013, an East Chicago Police Department (ECPD) officer came upon a vehicle travelling in the 4500 block of Euclid and found that the vehicle’s taillights were not operational. The vehicle appeared to be occupied by at least 3 individuals.
The officer soon learned that the vehicle had been reported stolen earlier that day, from a location in East Chicago. The officer requested back up units and efforts were then made to curb the vehicle. Initially, the vehicle began to slow in the area of 144th and Ivy, but it then drove off and a pursuit ensued, which involved several ECPD units.
The vehicle neared a train crossing near the area of Chicago Avenue and Kennedy, at which time the railroad crossing gate began to drop. The subjects drove around the gate and it is believed their vehicle then made contact with the gate. The vehicle then came into contact with an ECPD squad that had been waiting on the other side of the railroad tracks. As a result, both vehicles were extensively damaged.
Several subjects from the vehicle then began to run from the scene, however, an 18 year old adult, identified as Arturo Gonzalez, was arrested at the scene is being held pending automobile theft charges.
Officers then took part in a foot pursuit involving the other subjects, during which time gunshots were fired by an ECPD Officer. A short time later, a 17 year old juvenile presented himself at St. Catherine’s Hospital in East Chicago with a gunshot wound to his leg, which he represented happened when an unknown subject attempted to rob him at gunpoint.
Due to the officer involved shooting, coupled with what appears to be a subject shot by the officer, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office has been requested to carry out an investigation regarding the officer involved shooting incident. This is an ongoing investigation and the department has no further comment at this time.