Police officer and 2 others injured, 10 displaced in overnight fires

A Chicago police officer and two other people were injured in overnight fires that displaced at least 10 people from Lawndale and Englewood neighborhood homes.

The 31-year-old police officer was injured in an extra-alarm fire in the Harrison Court Apartments at the intersection of Sacramento Boulevard and Harrison Street. A 60-year-old man was injured in the same fire, which started before 3:40 a.m.

The officer was taken to Rush University Medical Center in good condition after he made early contact with the 60-year-old man, who was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital in fair-to-serious condition after suffering smoke inhalation injuries.

The fire is being attributed to the "careless use of smoking materials in the presence of medical oxygen," according to Chicago Fire Department Spokesman Larry Langford.

Private security guards walking foot patrol through the buildings heard the alarm and saw smoke coming from the fourth floor.

Joseph Rodriguez, 24, knocked on doors to let people know they needed to get out of the building while firefighters were still responding.

He grabbed a fire extinguisher but said the fire was too large to contain. The man in the apartment told him the medical tank caught fire, he said.

The fire and extra alarm was struck out in less than 30 minutes and crews remained at the scene into the morning. Harrison between Sacramento and California Avenue was closed to traffic but reopened by about 6 a.m.

In Englewood about midnight, one teen suffered a hand injury escaping a burning two-story brick apartment building that displaced 10 people. Six children were among the 10 displaced. 

The fire was in the first floor of an apartment at the intersection of 71st Street and Laflin Avenue, just east of Ashland Avenue. 

pnickeas@tribune.com | Twitter: @PeterNickeas

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  • Bold predictions for Lolla 2015

    Bold predictions for Lolla 2015

    The Lolla schedule is sort of like the NCAA tournament: there are millions of possible combinations, and it’s anyone’s guess what the winning picks will be. With that in mind, we make some bold predictions about how this year’s fest (returning to Grant Park Fri.-Sun.) will turn out. Breakout artist...

  • 2010 killing of Chicago cop detailed at trial; man claims self-defense

    2010 killing of Chicago cop detailed at trial; man claims self-defense

    The man on trial in the killing of Chicago police Officer Thor Soderberg hated police and surprised the officer as he changed out of his uniform at shift end and placed his duty belt down, a Cook County prosecutor alleged Monday.

  • Aldermen to hold hearing on untested rape kits

    Aldermen to hold hearing on untested rape kits

    Chicago aldermen on Monday called on police officials to provide information on how quickly rape kits are being tested by the state crime lab, part of a largely symbolic effort to determine whether a large backlog is hampering work to apprehend rapists.

  • Alderman's 'Chi-raq' criticism falls flat

    Alderman's 'Chi-raq' criticism falls flat

    A South Side alderman's effort to tweak filmmaker Spike Lee for using "Chi-raq" as the title for a movie about Chicago violence fell flat Monday with his colleagues.

  • ComEd to hold energy fairs to help low-income customers

    ComEd to hold energy fairs to help low-income customers

    Commonwealth Edison will hold energy fairs at satellite locations across the region Monday in order to get money to thousands of people struggling to pay their electricity bills in northern Illinois.

  • PAWS Chicago "Muttshots!"

    PAWS Chicago "Muttshots!"

    These adorable pups are on the loose looking for a place to call home. They have a warrant out for their arrest. Their crime? Being irresistibly cute and cuddly. If you're interested in adopting any of these dogs, please visit www.pawschicago.org for more information.