Sleepy Hollow police fatally shoot man during domestic disturbance
A man was shot and killed Sunday morning by two Sleepy Hollow police officers responding to a domestic disturbance that left two others injured.
The man, whom authorities were not identifying, was shot after brandishing a knife and attempting to cut two officers outside a residence near Maple Lane and Hemlock Drive, police said at a news conference Sunday night.
Police Chief James Linane said the officers have been placed on paid leave while state police investigate the shooting. It is routine for state police to investigate officer-involved shootings. Sleepy Hollow's police department is composed of 12 officers.
Sunday's event marked the first officer-involved shooting in the village's history and its first fatality of 2014. The village's last fatality occurred in 2009 and involved a 19-year-old woman who drowned in her family's swimming pool, Linane said.
Linane said the officers acted appropriately in Sunday's shooting.
"Every indication from my perspective, it appears my officers followed proper procedures," Linane said.
Sleepy Hollow Village President Stephen Pickett also said he believed the officers' actions were justified.
According to police, officers called to the residence about 11:52 a.m. arrived to find a male and female victim outside the home. The woman, police said, had an obvious head injury. A different man was on the home's driveway advancing toward the woman, police said.
That man, police said, ignored the officers' commands to stop and instead approached them. After the officers tried unsuccessfully to restrain him, according to police, he pulled out a knife and tried to slash the officers with it.
The officers responded by firing at the man "for their own safety and that of the victims," police said. The man was pronounced dead at Advocate Sherman Hospital in Elgin, Linane said.
There was no information available immediately about the conditions of the man and woman injured during the disturbance. Linane also would not say whether the suspect's knife caused the woman's head wound, or how the people involved were related to each other.
Linane said the shooting is unusual for the Kane County village of about 3,500 residents that aside from about a half-dozen burglaries saw no major crimes last year. The officers involved are also disturbed by Sunday's events, he said.
"This is something that doesn't happen to most police officers in their career," Linane said, adding that the officers have talked to a chaplain and that they and their families are receiving other assistance. "And in this case, being on this department, a small department, and never having anything like this before, I mean this is a brand-new experience, and they I would say are right now just sort of digesting it all and trying to figure out exactly what happened."
Police remained on the scene late Sunday, with the area of Maple Lane and Hemlock Drive blocked off to traffic. West Dundee police and firefighters from the Rutland-Dundee Township Fire Protection District assisted Sleepy Hollow Sunday.
• Daily Herald staff writer Doug T. Graham contributed to this story