Kohl’s shooting was undoubtedly the most bizarre incident of this year’s Black Friday occurrences, and it happened in Chicago’s southwest suburban Romeoville, Illinois, according to a Chicago Tribune report on Friday. As the crime went down, there were three men from nearby Joliet who were involved with a theft-and-get-away at the store.
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At approximately 10:00 p.m. on Thursday – Thanksgiving night – at 261 South Weber Road, a couple miles south of Interstate 55, police arrived after being alerted that a theft was in progress at the Kohl’s store. Police officers waited until two men brought a shopping cart out of the store toward a black Pontiac Sunbird automobile. One of the theft suspects ran toward the car and a police officer caught up with him. However, according to the police statement, the suspect closed the car door on the officer’s arm, not allowing the officer to disengage from the vehicle. The driver drove away while dragging the police officer with the car.
A second responding officer, according to the police report, verbally ordered the driver multiple times to stop the vehicle as it continued traveling in the parking lot while dragging the officer. After repeated orders to stop the vehicle, the officer fired three to four shots at the driver.
The driver, a 52-year-old man, was struck in the left arm, and the Sunfire finally stopped. A window in the vehicle shattered. At that time, the driver and a passenger were arrested. A third suspect was arrested inside Kohl’s.
Robert Russell, 51, of the 500 block of Francis Avenue in Joliet and Gerald Chamberlain, 28, of the 1300 block of Englewood in Joliet, had felony charges filed against them on Friday morning. Chamberlain was the suspect inside the store and Russell was a passenger in the Sunfire.
Russell was booked in the Will County Jail for attempted murder, retail theft and obstructing an officer. Chamberlain was jailed on one count of felony theft.
Russell was previously arrested for obstructing an officer in 2009 and has spent time in prison for theft and drug charges in 2002. Chamberlain was in jail in 2008 for resisting an officer or correctional employee. In 2009 he was sent to prison on a cocaine charge. He is currently awaiting trial on a felony drug charge, as well.
The driver was taken to Loyola Medical Center in Maywood with his gunshot wound.