Teenager shot during midday incident in DeKalb: Police

Nearby Founders Elementary School instituted amended dismissal efforts ‘out of abundance of caution,’ says DeKalb superintendent

DeKalb Police Department squad car.

DeKALB – A male teenager is in serious condition after a midday shooting which occurred on a sidewalk near Eighth and East Taylor streets in DeKalb Monday, DeKalb Police Chief David Byrd said.

And a nearby elementary school instituted amended afternoon dismissal out of “an abundance of caution,” said DeKalb District 428 Superintendent Minerva Garcia-Sanchez.

Police responded to reports of a shooting about 3:15 p.m. Monday in the 800 block of East Taylor Street on the city’s south side. Paramedics transported the teenager to Northwestern Medicine Kishwaukee Hospital.

“We’re dealing with a shooting, we have one subject, an injured male,” Byrd said. “He’s a teenager in serious but stable condition.”

Byrd said police arrested two persons of interest, though no charges have yet been announced. Detectives remained at the scene of the shooting for about two hours, according to a citywide police emergency alert which stated the area was cleared of police activity at around 5:15 p.m.

The shooting remains under police investigation. Byrd said police are still piecing together what happened, though officers believe there is no outlying threat to the larger public.

“We believe this was a targeted situation,” Byrd said. “Looks like at this time, the persons of interest and the victim know each other.”

Area schools take precautions

Garcia-Sanchez said she herself and other district officials went to Founders Elementary, 821 S. Seventh St. in DeKalb, immediately after police notified the district of the nearby shooting, which did not involve anyone of elementary-school age, she said.

Huntley Middle School, 1515 S. Fourth St., was also placed under what the district calls “community emergency status.”

“When shots were fired, the schools went on a community emergency status, which means that nobody leaves or enters the building until further notice,” Garcia-Sanchez said. “Normally what we would do is we would keep kids inside. We released kids to parents in their cars, and we released kids to get on the bus to be removed from the situation. And walkers were not allowed to leave until they could be picked up by a family member or somebody who was representing the family.”

Garcia-Sanchez said monitored dismissal – with two school resource police officers from the DeKalb Police Department and the district’s crisis team – was able to occur at its usual time of 3:30 p.m. Monday. Students were all released within about a half hour.

Parents of children who normally walk home from school were called first by school staff, Garcia-Sanchez said, so they could make plans to pick their children up. A districtwide message was then sent to all families notifying them of the situation, she said.

“We were there almost instantly taking care of the situation,” Garcia-Sanchez said. “So when we got here we had the assistant principal...give us an update on what was occurring and then we supported them as needed and supported staff as they were calling parents to have kids come to pick up. SROs were keeping us apprised of what needed to happen…and then our goal was to ensure everybody left the building safely and that no one was walking without an adult.”

The superintendent said Huntley Middle School also took precautions, bringing children inside during the community emergency alert.

“Just to make sure out of an abundance of caution that nothing would happen,” Garcia-Sanchez said. “But we even informed everyone that this occurred but there was never any harm to any of our students while they’re in the buildings.”

District officials, including Garcia-Sanchez and the district’s crisis intervention team, will be on hand at Founders and Huntley schools Tuesday morning to answer any questions parents or children might have.

“So they would have somebody to talk to, so we’ll be making sure we are supporting social-emotional needs in the morning,” Garcia-Sanchez said.

The headline of this story was updated at 6:57 p.m. Aug. 22, 2022 to convey a more specific location of where the shooting happened. This story was updated at 9 p.m. Aug. 22, 2022 with comments from DeKalb District 428 Superintendent Minerva Garcia-Sanchez. Additional updates could occur.

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