Cops: Burglar shot to death by homeowner on West Side

A 44-year-old man on crutches fatally shot one of two intruders who came charging at him Friday morning in the Heart of Chicago neighborhood, according to police.

Mario Viramontes, 31, was declared dead on the scene in 2000 block of West 21st Street at 9:22 a.m., according to the Cook County medical examiner's office.

Police were called to the scene at 9:09 a.m. for a burglary, and when they arrived, they found that a "male offender" who had been trying to commit a burglary had been shot by the homeowner, said Police News Affairs Sgt. Antoinette Ursitti.

The 44-year-old homeowner was sleeping when his frightened 18-year-old daughter woke him up, then told him that she heard noises and thought someone was breaking into the apartment behind theirs, according to a police report.

At first she thought the noise was a heater in that apartment but after she heard something fall, she locked the door that separates the two residences, the report said.

The man "grabbed both of his crutches and walked over and unlocked and opened the door,'' the report said.

He did not see anyone at first, so he returned to his bedroom to get his gun. When he went back to the rear apartment, he saw two intruders "charging towards" him so he shot at them, according to the report.

Both burglars stopped, turned around and ran back towards the back door, but one of them collapsed and fell to the floor.

Two men were seen running away and yelling gang slogans and the 44-year-old told his daughter to call 911.

Responding officers found the back door of the rear apartment had been pried with a metal shovel and found shell casings on the kitchen floor, the report said.

During the course of the investigation, police learned the 44-year-old homeowner's Firearm Owners Identification card was expired and he was charged with one count of possessing a firearm with an expired FOID card, a misdemeanor, police said.

Viramontes lived in the 2100 block of West Cermak Road, about two blocks from the break-in, officials said. An autopsy is scheduled for later today.

Tribune reporter Liam Ford contributed

chicagobreaking@tribune.com | Twitter: @ChicagoBreaking

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  • Man fatally shot after argument over woman at South Loop lounge
    Man fatally shot after argument over woman at South Loop lounge

    An argument over a woman led to one man being killed and another wounded during a shooting inside a South Loop music lounge early Saturday, police said.

  • Oklahoma fraternity's racist chant learned on a cruise
    Oklahoma fraternity's racist chant learned on a cruise

    Members of a University of Oklahoma fraternity apparently learned a racist chant that recently got their chapter disbanded during a national leadership cruise four years ago that was sponsored by the fraternity's national administration, the university's president said Friday.

  • In NYC building collapse, mayor cites 'inappropriately' tapped gas line; 2 missing
    In NYC building collapse, mayor cites 'inappropriately' tapped gas line; 2 missing

    Someone may have improperly tapped a gas line before an explosion that leveled three apartment buildings and injured nearly two dozen people, Mayor Bill de Blasio said Friday as firefighters soaked the still-smoldering buildings and police searched for at least two missing people.

  • Emanuel uses borrowing to cope with Daley's debt burden
    Emanuel uses borrowing to cope with Daley's debt burden

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel has reduced spending and increased fines, fees and certain taxes to shrink the chronic budget deficits left over from his predecessor, Richard M. Daley.

  • Six Flags Great America's lost attractions
    Six Flags Great America's lost attractions

    Not every ride's the Willard's Whizzer. That iconic coaster debuted in 1976 when Marriott's Great America, now Six Flags Great America, in Gurnee, Ill., first opened. And it's still popular today. But for every Whizzer there's a Tidal Wave, Shockwave or Z-Force, rides existing only in memory.

  • Denim's just getting started
    Denim's just getting started

    Five years ago, denim-on-denim defied all of the dire warnings in the "Undateable" handbook: Instead of evoking John Denver or Britney Spears in her misstyled youth, chambray shirts paired with darker blue jeans became as cool as actor Johnny Depp and street-style heroine Alexa Chung.

Comments
Loading