CHICAGO -- Grieving relatives on Saturday were today forced to do something no one ever wants to do: identify the body of a loved one. This after 25-year-old Courtney Taylor was killed after shots were fired in the lobby of the Hyatt Regency McCormick Place.
Police say there was a birthday party happening in the lobby of the hotel when someone pulled out a gun and started shooting around 2:30 a.m. Taylor was reportedly trying to break up the fight, but ended up dead.
Taylor's body, covered in a white sheet, was visible through the hotel's windows--along with shattered glass and toppled furniture.
Police say the suspect fired several more shots as he ran from the building, fleeing on foot, northbound on King Drive.
Jacqueline Gaddy has worked at the Hyatt for 16 years and says she was shocked when she heard what had happened. Gaddy says while hotel parties have become more frequent, the staff doesn't put up with rowdiness of illegal activity.
Hotel staff closed off a portion of the lobby and police cordoned off the sidewalk in front of the hotel were at least six more shell casings found as they processed the scene.
Hyatt Regency McCormick Place released this statement saying:
The safety and security of guests and associates is a top priority. This appears to be an isolated incident, however the hotel is taking all appropriate precautions in an effort to ensure that guests and hotel associates remain in a safe environment. We also want to extend our sympathies to the family of the deceased.
Taylor leaves behind a daughter. community activist Andrew Holmes says there is now a $1,000 dollar reward for information leading to a conviction. He's asking anyone who knows anything to report tips anonymously to 1-800-u-tell-us.