Chicago, IL – A suspect accused of shooting a Chicago police officer during an attempted traffic stop last month was apprehended in Iowa on Wednesday, according to police.
Chicago Police Department (CPD) Superintendent David Brown announced 28-year-old Jabari Edwards’ arrest during a press conference at police headquarters on July 13, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
Edwards was apprehended in Burlington, Iowa, by the Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force earlier in the day, according to WFLD.
He was booked into the Des Moines County Correctional Center pending extradition back to Chicago to face two counts of attempted murder of a police officer, the Chicago-Sun Times reported.
CPD Chief of Detectives Brendan Deenihan said Edwards was convicted of attempted robbery in the Chicago area in 2012.
He was also facing felony gun charges in the recent past, but those charges were dropped in February, Chief Deenihan said.
The reason for the dismissal was not immediately released.
Chief Deenihan said witnesses helped police in connecting Edwards with the vehicle involved in the attack on the Chicago officers, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
They also told police where the suspect ran to after he crashed the vehicle in the wake of the shooting.
From there, investigators located video footage that allegedly showed Edwards hiding a firearm that was later matched to bullet casings left at the scene of the shooting.
Superintendent Brown said investigators “worked tirelessly” to identify and locate Edwards, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
“This arrest is the result of really exceptional police work and it should serve as a warning to all those involved in criminal activity that you cannot run, nor can you hide, from justice,” the police superintendent said. “You will be held accountable and you will face the consequences of your actions.”
Superintendent Brown said he is also hopeful that the alleged gunman’s arrest will bring “some sense of justice and peace to the mind of our officer as she continues her recovery.”
The attack occurred as CPD Officer Fernanda Ballesteros and her partner were out on patrol in their marked cruiser on June 1.
The uniformed officers attempted to stop a vehicle near Paulina Street and 61st Street at approximately 5:42 p.m., but the suspect refused to pull over and initially sped away, Superintendent Brown previously told WLS.
He then circled back around, pulled up next to the officers’ patrol vehicle, and opened fire, the police superintendent said.
Officer Ballesteros, who was driving the cruiser, was shot in the shoulder during the attack, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
Bullet fragments also hit her in her head, according to WMAQ.
As the gunman sped away, the wounded hero’s partner got behind the wheel and rushed her to University of Chicago Hospital, Superintendent Brown said.
Officer Ballesteros, 27, arrived at the hospital in critical condition, WLS reported.
She remained hospitalized at the University of Chicago Medical Center until June 5, when she was wheeled out of the hospital to the cheers of dozens of fellow law enforcement officers and supporters, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.
“This week has shown me and my family the true brotherhood of the Chicago Police Department, and that the brotherhood extends beyond me to caring and protecting my family as well,” Officer Ballesteros said in a statement. “I am choosing to see the light in this dark time. And I will grow stronger, both physically and mentally, from this tragedy.”
Officer Ballesteros said she is especially thankful for the actions of her partner.
“And most importantly, thank you to Officer Young, my partner who had my back and carried me to safety,” she said, according to the Chicago Sun-Times. “I’m forever grateful for his quick thinking and swift response. You were my guardian angel that night.”