On April 14, 2020, Officers Cesar Villalobos and Robert Guerra were on patrol and in the area of 79th and Evans when the officers observed a vehicle they recognized to be stolen. Both officers followed the vehicle and curbed their marked vehicle a short distance away when they observed the driver of the stolen vehicle had parked. Both officers were familiar with the said vehicle as the vehicle and the offender fled from another beat team on April 9th. Officers observed the doors opening and approached to identify the driver as the wanted offender. Officers Guerra and Villalobos detained the occupants and identified the driver as the wanted offender.
Officer Guerra attempted to place the offender in custody at which time the offender fled on foot. Officer Guerra gave chase on foot and radioed for assistance. Sgt. Kevin Sellers and other officers responded to the assist. At this time, Officer Guerra lost sight of the offender in the 7900 block of South Langley. A perimeter was then set up to locate the offender. During the search, area detectives relayed a radio transmission indicating that the offender was wanted for home invasion and to use caution. A systematic grid search was conducted at which time the offender appeared on the south end of the block and fleeing on foot. All officers gave chase.
Sgt. Sellers and assisting officers observed the offender in a rear yard on the 7900 Block of S. Evans. Officers gave the offender commands to surrender at which time the offender jumped a fence southbound and ran onto a rear porch.
The offender was then observed placing an object under a piece of carpet on the rear porch. The offender then began to violently forward kick the rear door to the first-floor apartment. Sgt. Sellers radioed said information and advised officers to use caution and establish a perimeter. Several officers guarded the rear while Sgt. Sellers, along with other officers, relocated to the front. Within a very short time, an elderly female exited the front door in a panic stating, “Someone is kicking in my back door.” Entry was immediately made into the first-floor apartment.
Upon entry into the kitchen, the offender was observed kicking in the interior rear porch door which led into the kitchen. The offender was immediately detained and placed into custody by the arresting officers. A custodial search revealed a plastic bag containing pills of ecstasy and a black ski mask. Officers relocated to the rear porch and pulled the rug where the offender was earlier observed placing an object. Officer Guerra recovered a loaded chrome Smith and Wesson .357 Magnum. It should be noted that during the offender’s forcible entry into the rear, the male resident was in the bedroom adjacent to the kitchen while the female resident ran out the front door. Both residents were in their seventies.
All the officers relocated back to the 006th district where they coordinated with area detectives and the state’s attorney’s office for charges. During the investigation, it was learned that the offender wore a black mask and a revolver was stolen from the home invasion reported. Ultimately, the state’s attorney’s office approved various weapons charges. A criminal history check revealed the offender to be a convicted felon, wanted for Possession of a Stolen Motor Vehicle from Champaign, Il, and had an outstanding parole warrant.
Over several weeks, detectives worked diligently with the victims conducting interviews and were subsequently able to obtain charges for home invasion from the state’s attorney’s office.
“The teamwork that occurred during this situation is something that happens every day within the Chicago Police Department. We are proud of these officers and thankful that they were able to apprehend the suspect without injury,” said Phil Cline, Executive Director of the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation.
These incidents were a coordinated effort by all the listed members of The Chicago Police Department. The officers on this day thwarted an additional home invasion and risked their own lives to save an elderly couple from harm by an armed habitual felon. For their incredible bravery and hard work, we are proud to make them our December Officers of the Month. Congratulations Sgt Kevin Sillers, PO Cesar Villalobos, & PO Robert Guerra.