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Monday’s heroes

Tuesday, Nov 20, 2018

* Tribune

A Chicago police officer and two other people were killed in an attack at a South Side hospital Monday afternoon that sent medical personnel and police scrambling through halls, stairwells and even the nursery in search of victims and the shooter before he was found dead.

Officer Samuel Jimenez, on the force less than two years, was gunned down as he went to the aid of other officers who had been called to Mercy Hospital & Medical Center around 3:20 p.m. about an assault. Jimenez, 28, was married with three small children. He’s the second Chicago police officer killed in the line of duty this year, the most since 2010 when five officers were fatally shot. The first was Near North District Cmdr. Paul Bauer, killed Feb. 13 outside the Thompson Center.

“Those officers that responded today saved a lot of lives,” said Chicago police Superintendent Eddie Johnson. “They were heroes because we just don’t know how much damage (the shooter) was prepared to do.”

Police had been called to the hospital after Juan Lopez, 32, confronted emergency room doctor Tamara O’Neal, apparently over a “broken engagement,” sources said. By the time Jimenez and his partner arrived on the scene, Lopez had shot O’Neal repeatedly, standing over her as he fired the last shots, according to police sources and witnesses.

“When they pulled up, they heard the gunshots, and they did what heroic officers always do — they ran toward that gunfire,” Johnson said. “So they weren’t assigned to that particular call, but they went because that’s what we do.”

That’s very true.

* There were some other heroes as well. If you have time today, listen to how the police dispatchers handled this horrible incident. They were calm professionals under pressure who helped focus and organize the police response

[Hat tip: Eric Tendian]

- Posted by Rich Miller        

22 Comments
  1. - Amalia - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:29 am:

    so sad and sorry for those who perished and those who experienced the tragedy first hand. sympathies to their friends and family. and thoughts for all the first responders who knew the deceased officer and those who contributed to the beautiful tribute as the officer was taken to the medical examiner’s facility. so much that is hard to understand about this incident.


  2. - WSJ Paywall - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:37 am:

    I don’t even know what to say anymore. I feel like I’ve run out of sadness.


  3. - Anonimity - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:41 am:

    I wonder if the NRA will tell the Drs. and other victims to “stay in their lane”?


  4. - Grandson of Man - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:42 am:

    As horrible as this is, the equal tragedy is that this is another day in the life in this country. I wish we prioritized reducing violence at every government level possible. Government certainly can’t or shouldn’t solve every problem. Individuals and families are responsible for behavior. But I think we owe it to each other to use whatever resources we can to reduce violence.

    We used government to commit violence in war based on lies, like we did in Iraq and Vietnam. We used government to give a trillion-dollar tax cut to those who need it least. We use government for so many things. We can certainly do better, and I hope we legalize pot and treat certain nonviolent crimes differently, so we can have more resources to use toward combating violent crime.


  5. - Montrose - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:52 am:

    One of the saddest parts of this tragic event for me is realizing that one of my first thoughts when I heard the news was “this one wasn’t as bad.” How awful is that? How awful that we become numb to mass shootings, shootings in general. My heart goes out to those lost and their families. And to everyone that will be living with the trauma of yesterday for years to come.

    There are too many guns out there. Period. Too many.


  6. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:55 am:

    It’s a tough, vital job on the best of days. And every day they go to work, they know this is possible.


  7. - Informed Mom - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:55 am:

    Listening now. I can’t imagine doing these emergency response jobs with a cool head. Respect.


  8. - Moe Berg - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 9:59 am:

    Requiescat in pace, poor, dear souls. This should not have happened.

    Rather than paralyzing sadness and grief, while recognizing that not every terrible act can be prevented, we must ask of Illinois Democrats, you have a governorship and significant supermajorities: what are you going to do to address the horrible toll that gun violence has taken on our state?

    An October 2018 Hart Research poll, taken before the Pittsburgh synagogue massacre, shows that there is across-the-board, bipartisan support for common sense gun laws:

    “The gun violence prevention issue is helping Democratic candidates to open up a massive generation gap, especially with suburban women,
    college-educated white women, and older women.”

    “The survey asked voters how a candidate’s support for eight different gun violence reductions policies would impact their support for a candidate. In every case, 59% or more say they would be more likely to support the candidate,
    while less than a quarter register less support. The policies with the strongest support are criminal background checks on all gun sales, making it harder for domestic abusers to get firearms, and red-flag laws. Voter also appear poised to reward candidates who favor waiting periods for gun purchases as well as bans
    on bumpstocks, assault weapons, and high-capacity magazines.”


  9. - Chicago_Downstater - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:00 am:

    Heartbreaking. It’s all just so heartbreaking.


  10. - Oswego Willy - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:02 am:

    So terribly tragic. So much pain, so much damage to innocent lives.

    My heartfelt sympathies to the families.


  11. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:19 am:

    –I wonder if the NRA will tell…–

    They will be silent. The story doesn’t fit their boiler-plate talking points. In this case, an armed police officer was murdered by a conceal-carry permit holder.


  12. - A guy - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:23 am:

    My heart hurts.


  13. - Wensicia - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:24 am:

    ==And every day they go to work, they know this is possible.==

    It seems like rest of us also know this is possible, at work, school, churches, leisure venues. We train for this now, like yesterday’s hospital staff, and the police. The new abnormal.


  14. - Nick Name - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:29 am:

    ===–I wonder if the NRA will tell…–

    They will be silent.===

    They’ll be silent for a few days, then they’ll fire up their propaganda machine. “Let’s not politicize this etc. blah, blah.”


  15. - illini - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:32 am:

    My niece is a medical professional who will be starting her residency next year. One would think that a hospital should not be a work environment where anyone would have to be confronted with such situations.

    We have to do better.


  16. - Perrid - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:33 am:

    Heck, I’m tense just listening to the audio, knowing exactly how it’ll end. God knows how these heroes do it every day.


  17. - Jocko - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:37 am:

    A sobering reminder of the motto “to protect and serve”.

    To add to what others are saying, more Americans have died from gun violence in the past 50 years than in all US wars.


  18. - MD - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:41 am:

    I’d like to see an order from Governor to fly flags at half staff. Another day, more deaths due to gun violence. Sigh.


  19. - JakeCP - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:54 am:

    This was a very tragic day for Chicago, CPD, and Mercy Hospital. I am keeping all of them in my thoughts and prayers as we move into the holiday season.


  20. - Big Al - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 12:43 pm:

    === MD - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 10:41 am:

    I’d like to see an order from Governor to fly flags at half staff. Another day, more deaths due to gun violence. Sigh. ===

    I’m honestly rather surprised to see an order hasn’t come down yet. The same thing happened after the synagogue shooting - not sure if it was a delay from the Gov, from cook county DHSEM or because it was a weekend but it took two days for the order to get to everyone’s inbox.


  21. - I Miss Bentohs - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 1:41 pm:

    So sorry another officer killed. I hope we get back to the much more common sense of shoot to kill bad guys as soon as possible and not worry about all this nonsense from the cop haters.


  22. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Nov 20, 18 @ 3:03 pm:

    –I hope we get back to the much more common sense of shoot to kill bad guys as soon as possible and not worry about all this nonsense from the cop haters.–

    Way to use a hero’s death to feed your grievances, unsupported by any facts.


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