BOURBONNAIS, Ill. — Visitation was held Thursday for the police officer from Bradley who was shot and killed late last month while answering a call at a hotel.
Bradley police sergeant Marlene Rittmanic, 49, was killed in the line of duty on December 29.
Her partner, 27-year-old Officer Tyler Bailey, was shot and critically wounded in the head and remains hospitalized.
Charged in connection with the shootings are 25-year old Darius Sullivan and 26-year-old Xandria Harris. The Kankakee County State’s Attorney is seeking federal charges in pursuit of the death sentence in this case.
According to court documents, Rittmanic and Bailey were called to the Comfort Inn Hotel on the 1500 block of Illinois Highway 50 for a call of unattended dogs in the parking lot. Once there, they learned Sullivan had outstanding warrants for his arrest.
A struggled ensued. Rittmanic was disarmed by the pair and began pleading for her life, prosecutors allege.
She was then allegedly shot by Sullivan twice with her service weapon, court documents state.
Bradley Deputy Chief Craig Anderson spoke at the visitation.
“We’re hurting,” he said. “The officers are hurting but we’re strong. The community is hurting but this is part of the process of healing.”
Those who worked alongside Rittmanic praised her career, and service to the community.
Rittmanic was a 21-year law enforcement veteran, serving first as an Iroquois County Deputy and then joined the Bradley Police Department in 2007.
In 2020, she was awarded law enforcement officer of the year in Kankakee County.
She was head of field training for the Bradley Police Department, passing down her knowledge and passion for community policing and watching out for her colleagues.
“(She) always took care of our officers,” Anderson said. “That’s one of the things that hurts the most with our guys is that she was one of the officers, one of our leaders that took care of us, and kept us moving through tough times.”
A military and first responder walk through the Hawkins Centennial Chapel at Olivet Nazarene University was part of the service as well.
A funeral will be held at the same location Friday at 9 a.m.