DES PLAINES, Ill. — A settlement has been reached between the city of Des Plaines and a teenager accidentally shot by an officer who was pursuing a bank robber in 2019.
Just as jury selection was set to begin, the two sides agreed to the settlement, which is close to $2 million. It comes nearly three years after the shooting.
Rylan Wilder was working as an intern at UpBeat Music and Arts School, located in the 4300 block of W. Irving Park Rd., on November 19, 2019 when he was shot.
It stemmed from an alleged robbery in Des Plaines and subsequent police chase into Chicago. Police had chased the suspect, they said, had just robbed a bank and fired shots at police — grazing an officer in the head.
Surveillance video obtained by WGN Investigates shows the suspect running through the music store. The Des Plaines officer ran after him and then opened fire with an assault rifle as the suspect reached the store’s back door. The suspect was killed.
Wilder was wounded in the crossfire. Surgeons at Lurie Children’s Hospital performed at least 18 surgeries, rerouting arteries to keep blood flowing to his hand, attempting to reconnect nerves. A finger had been severed.
Before the shooting, Wilder was a guitar player and was one of the youngest to ever perform at Riot Fest. Doctors were not sure if he’d ever play at that level again.
Attorneys said he was able to pick up the guitar again, but he still has no feeling in his left arm, hand and fingers.
The Cook County state’s attorney’s officer determined the shooting was “justified,” using deadly force for both self-defense and to stop the armed and threatening suspect who was attempting to escape.
The state’s attorney’s review also states the Des Plaines officer told investigators he didn’t see Wilder before he opened fire on the bank robber.
Des Plaines told the Chicago Sun-Times that despite the settlement, the city does not admit to any wrongdoing or liability.
The last time WGN interviewed Wilder in 2021, no one from the city has called to check-in.