Brookfield police arrested one juvenile and recovered a handgun following a short foot chase near Ehlert Park on Jan. 23 around 8 p.m., the third incident involving a firearm in that area since mid-December.
Police Chief Michael Kuruvilla said the department’s preliminary investigation has not revealed any connection between this latest incident and the other two, which also did not appear to be related to one another.
Unlike the prior two incidents, on Dec. 9 and Jan. 12, no shots were fired during the most recent incident. According to Kuruvilla, police received a 911 call of two suspicious juveniles, one of whom was carrying what looked be a handgun, in the vicinity of Gerritsen and Maple avenues.
Officers responding to the area located two juveniles at Gerritsen and Elm. The juvenile identified by the witness as the one carrying the handgun reportedly ran from police, who detained him in the 4500 block of Maple Avenue. Prior to being arrested, the juvenile reportedly tossed a loaded handgun, which broke apart, onto the ground.
The gun was described as a .45-caliber weapon. In the prior two incidents, in which shots were fired but did not strike any person or object, 9 mm firearms were discharged.
“I’d exercise caution in connecting [the incidents],” Kuruvilla said. “As far as evidence, there’s nothing to suggest the first two [incidents] were related, and at least preliminarily this doesn’t appear to be connected.”
Both boys are 15 years old. The one allegedly armed with the gun, a Countryside resident, was charged with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and resisting arrest and turned over to juvenile justice authorities. The other boy, a LaGrange resident, was released without being charged.
Kuruvilla said police had already ramped up patrols in the area and will continue to do so.
“Our intention by showing more presence is to bring some reassurance to the community over there,” Kuruvilla said. “We’ll continue our focused efforts.”