Catalytic converter thieves shoot man in North Center he shoots one of them, too

Update 10:15 p.m. — Chicago police tonight confirmed that charges are being pursued against the 16-year-old who showed up with gunshot wounds at Humboldt Park Health. Our original report follows.

Update August 2, 2022 — The 16-year-old was released without being charged, according to the Chicago Police Department.

A thief shot a man who intervened as they tried to steal the catalytic converter from his car in North Center on Thursday afternoon, according to Chicago police. And the victim, who is a concealed carry holder, may have shot one of the thieves, too.

It’s the second time in less than a year that shots have been fired in the same neighborhood between catalytic converter thieves and concealed carry holders. In the previous incident, one of the thieves was killed.

The shooting occurred on the 2200 block of West Oakdale in the North Center community area. | Multiplottr

Around 4:25 p.m. on Thursday, police received reports of a two-man catalytic converter theft crew operating in the North Center neighborhood in a black Jeep.

While officers were looking for the thieves, a 57-year-old man in the 2200 block of West Oakdale heard noises outside his home around 4:46 p.m. When he went outside to investigate, he discovered thieves trying to take his car’s catalytic converter, according to police.

One of the thieves pulled out a gun and shot the victim, who was hit twice in the abdomen. According to officers on the scene, the victim returned fire, and witnesses saw a young man wearing a black hoodie get into a black SUV while holding his left forearm.

About 20 minutes after the shooting, a juvenile with an arrest record arrived at Humboldt Park Health, formerly Norwegian Hospital, wearing a black hoodie for treatment of two gunshot wounds to his left forearm. Investigators are working to determine if there is a connection between the injured teen and the shooting.

Meanwhile, an ambulance transported the North Center victim to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where he was listed in fair condition, according to police.

Thursday’s altercation is similar to a shootout that occurred less than a half-mile away late on November 11, 2021.

In that case, a 44-year-old man was sitting on the steps of his home when he heard a loud noise coming from the street in the 2900 block of North Wolcott, police said. He investigated the noise and discovered two men under a vehicle.

The two men both drew guns and began shooting at him without warning, police said. The victim, who is a concealed carry holder, pulled out his gun and returned fire, striking one of the men in the neck, according to police.

According to authorities, the thief, 25-year-old Darion Blackman, collapsed on a nearby sidewalk with a gun under his arm and died a short time later. Two of his accomplices escaped.

At the time, Blackman was out on bail for felony gun charges.

The victim was not injured in November.

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