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Gun battle erupted as wanted teen opened fire at US Marshal officer, police say

A 19-year-old man is accused of a shooting that wounded a police dog and an officer on the US Marshals Service as he was being arrested Thursday afternoon on the Northwest Side, prosecutors said in court Saturday.

Tarrion Johnson appeared before Cook County Judge Kelly Marie McCarthy, who denied bail during a livestreamed hearing.

Johnson, of the 4200 block of West Cullerton Avenue, was charged with five counts of attempted first-degree murder, two counts of attempted armed robbery and aggravated cruelty to animals, Chicago police said.

The shooting occurred at about 1:20 pm Thursday at a building at the 5200 block of West Belmont Avenue, where Chicago police and members of the US Marshals Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force were attempting to arrest Johnson on a warrant for attempted murder and attempted robbery, according to police and prosecutors.

All the officers, including a police dog sporting a camouflage vest with K-9 written on both sides, were wearing marked clothing, displaying “police” and stars, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said officers were watching the building and saw Johnson leave out a back door, and then turn around and return inside.

A Chicago Police officer hoisting a shield approached the back door with several other officers and “announced their office” multiple times and called out Johnson’s name before the door was “breached” by making a hole in it, prosecutors said.

The shield-wearing officer walked into a hallway, where he saw Johnson, who entered a bedroom and returned to the hallway with a gun, prosecutors said.

Screaming “gun!” the officer fired one shot as Johnson sprinted back into a bedroom and fired three shots outside a window – hitting the Marshal and the K-9 outside, prosecutors said.

Johnson went back to the hallway and fired two additional shots at the officers, who yelled: “Put the gun down!” as the shield-wearing officer “returned fire,” prosecutors said.

The US Marshal was graced in the hand and at least one shot pierced a bullet-resistant vest, placing “stress” on the officer’s chest while police dog was shot in the right shoulder, and the bullet lodged into it.

The dog’s condition was critical at first, but has stabilized, though more surgeries may be needed, prosecutors said.

Johnson was placed into custody as he left a side door with another person, a female, who was with him. Police recovered a “ghost gun” and found several spent casings, five of which were fired from the ghost gun, prosecutors said.

Johnson is a lifelong Cook County resident who lives with his girlfriend who is pregnant with their child, said an attorney representing him. He attended Chicago’s Social Justice High School and makes music and art, according to the attorney.

Johnson has several juvenile adjudications, including a 2020 possession of a controlled substance, a 2017 aggravated vehicular hijacking and possession of a stolen motor vehicle and delivery of a controlled substance from 2016, prosecutors said.

Johnson is due back in court on Monday.

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