Police continue investigation into officer shooting

Area law enforcement agencies are looking for more information about who shot a Carbondale, Illinois, police officer on Sunday.

The 26-year-old officer’s name has not been released, but police say he is in serious but stable condition at a St. Louis hospital. Police are still trying to identify at least two men who were in the car he was chasing when he was shot.

About 11:30 p.m. Sunday, the officer responded to a report of gunshots in the 700 block of North Robert A. Stalls Street. On the way there, he saw a tan, four-door vehicle driving away from the scene. Police chased the car onto North Marion Street, then east to the 2400 block of Dillinger Road. Police say during at least one man shot at the police car during the pursuit, hitting the officer and ending the chase. Carbondale police say the officers did not return fire.

Police are still investigating the source of the original shots. Illinois State Police are leading the investigation into the shooting. Agencies from throughout the area are helping in the search. 

During a news conference Monday afternoon, Carbondale Chief of Police Jeff Grubbs said he chose not to release the officer’s name out of respect for the family.

"You’re all in our thoughts and in our prayers. We thank you for your bravery and service to the citizens of our city," Grubbs said.

Grubbs wouldn’t say how many times or where the officer was shot. He did say the officer has been working for the police department for three years.

On Monday, Local 6 talked to people who live along North Robert A. Stalls Street. It’s where most of Karla Henry’s family, including her close cousin, lives. "I jumped on my phone and called her immediately, because I wanted to make sure she and the kids were all okay," Henry said. "But, thank God, she wasn’t here."

Henry’s dream is to help her cousin, whose car window was shot out on the Fourth of July, and grandchildren move out of the area.

"It’s really hard when you’re not in a safe environment, when you can’t let your kids come outside and play without worrying if they’re going to get shot," Henry said.

Police are working to get a better description of the men involved. Grubbs says at least two men were in the car the officer chased, but he says there may have been more.

After the shooting, police say they found the vehicle involved in the pursuit — a tan Pontiac Grand Prix — on Dewmaine Road in Williamson County.

Police are offering a $10,000 reward to anyone with information on the shooting that leads to an arrest. Anyone with information can call the Carbondale Police Department at 618-457-3200. You may also call the Carbondale/SIU Crimestoppers anonymous tip line at 618-549-2677 or the Murphysboro/Jackson County anonymous top line at 618-687-2677.

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