Home Scandal and Gossip Why? Off duty Chicago cop shot dead- assailants on the run

Why? Off duty Chicago cop shot dead- assailants on the run

John P. Rivera
John P. Rivera identified as Chicago police officer gunned down. Screen shot.
John P. Rivera
John P. Rivera identified as Chicago police officer gunned down. Screen shot.

John P. Rivera identified as off duty Chicago police officer fatally gunned down in an unprovoked attack as he sat in a parked car with three others. Assailants on the run.

An off-duty Chicago cop has been shot dead while a second man remains in critical condition after a gunman fired into a parked car in the early hours of Saturday morning. The gunman was accompanied by two other men- all who fled on foot. 

The slain officer was named as John P. Rivera, a resident of the Hegewisch neighborhood on the city’s Far South Side. The second man’s name has yet to be released. 

Both men, aged 23, were sitting together in the River North neighborhood when two men approached and one began firing a gun into the car in an unprovoked attack.

Another man – also an off-duty Chicago police officer – and a civilian woman were in the car as well but were not injured in the attack, the Chicago SunTimes reported.  

Police reported the fatal victim shot in the mouth, chest and arm, and pronounced dead at Northwestern Memorial Hospital shortly before 4am.

Rivera was just weeks from his second anniversary as a policeman. 

John P. Rivera
Pictured, John P. Rivera. (Credit: Neko Castillo)

John P. Rivera Chicago cop shooting death: ‘Mark my words: we will find them.’

The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office said an autopsy was scheduled for tomorrow. 

The second man, who remains in critical condition, was shot in the chest and arm and was taken to Northwestern, where he is expected to survive.

A manhunt is underway for the three attackers who fled on foot. 

During a press conference outside the hospital, Police Deputy Supt. Anthony Riccio said they were unaware of what could have sparked the shooting.

‘It’s a very fresh investigation,’ Riccio said. 

Rivera and the attackers had ‘no problems, no words were exchanged, no robbery demand, no carjacking demand,’ Riccio said.

‘What we know about this incident so far is just really disgusting,’ Supt. Eddie Johnson said at Chicago police headquarters. ‘Mark my words: we will find them.’

During his Friday night shift, Rivera had handled the paperwork on a murder case, and he ‘helped console a family on an unthinkable loss,’ Johnson said.

Police remain at the scene in Chicago with the area cordoned off while forensic officers gather evidence. 

Chief Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi called the attack a ‘devastating incident,’ and said persons of interest were being questioned.

‘It’s a very sad day, we’re mourning the loss of yet another Chicago police officer,’ said a police union spokesman during the press conference. 

‘And yet, we’re going out there later today,‘ he said, referring to officers working the beat on Saturday.

Saturday morning’s attack occurred in a highly trafficked area- close to where numerous bars, restaurants and Holy Name Cathedral. It’s also a short walk away from Sound Bar, where a security guard was killed during an early-morning shootout outside that club earlier this month.

The shooting marks the latest tragedy for a police department that has endured the deaths of four on-duty officers and at least six officer suicides since the start of last year.