Man gets 10 years for shooting at off-duty Chicago cop after stealing officer’s car

CHICAGO — A man who exchanged gunfire with an off-duty Chicago cop after stealing the officer’s car on Christmas Eve has been handed a ten-year sentence.

Mayco Mata, 42, pleaded guilty to one count of attempted murder in exchange for the sentence from Judge James Linn. The judge ordered him to serve 85% of the sentence, giving Mata an estimated parole date of June 23, 2031.

Mata approached the off-duty officer at a gas station at Roosevelt Road and Ashland Avenue to ask for directions around 2:05 a.m. on December 24, 2022, prosecutors said. Moments later, Mata slid behind the wheel of the cop’s Jeep and drove away with its hood raised.

Mata didn’t get far. He crashed the stolen Jeep into a fire hydrant, got out, drew a 40-caliber handgun from his waistband, and fired at the off-duty officer, according to prosecutors. The officer pulled out his own 45-caliber gun and returned fire. The exchange was caught on video.

Mayco Mata | Chicago Police Department

No injuries were reported.

On-duty police officers arrested Mata about a half-mile from the gas station and recovered an unloaded 40-caliber handgun from his waistband, officials said. Investigators allegedly found 40-caliber and 45-caliber shell casings from where the two men shot at each other.

Prosecutors dropped 14 other felonies as part of Mata’s plea deal, including armed violence and multiple firearms violations. His previous felony convictions include a 2018 aggravated battery and a 2004 fleeing and eluding.

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