Man wearing homemade body armor fatally shot by Zion police

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ZION, Ill. — A man is dead after a police-involved shooting in north suburban Zion Wednesday morning.

Police say the 38-year-old man was carrying an airsoft gun that police  thought was real.  He was wearing a homemade bulletproof vest and was taking pictures of Zion schools.

It started at New Tech High School around  8 a.m. Police were called to the school for a suspicious man taking pictures of the building.  When they got there, the man ran away and was chased about three blocks to an alley on Ezekiel and 21st St in a residential neighborhood.

The spokesperson for the Lake County Major Crime’s Task Force says there was a struggle between the two officers in pursuit and the suspect and that’s when an officer shot the man.

Zion police tell WGN News they tried to use a taser and when that failed, they say they had no choice but to shoot.

At that time, they discovered the gun wasn’t real and the vest was homemade.

The man was taken to the hospital where he died.

One of the officers suffered minor injuries and was treated and released from the hospital.   All schools in the Zion area were put on a soft lockdown while police made sure there was no other threat.

Neighbors and parents say the incident was very unnerving.  Parents want to know why the guy was taking pictures of two schools; New Tech and Lakeview.

Authorities are not yet releasing the name of the man.

An autopsy is scheduled for Thursday morning.

Both officers involved in the shooting have been placed on paid administrative duty pending the outcome of an investigation, which is standard practice. One of those officers suffered a minor injury.

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