John P. Rivera Bio

A young, off-duty Chicago police officer was killed in an apparently random shooting that also critically wounded one of his friends early Saturday when they returned to their car after a night out on the town in River North.

Detectives were questioning one person of interest in the shooting that left 23-year-old Officer John P. Rivera dead, but police still were searching for at least two others — including the shooter, who remained at large Saturday afternoon.

John P. Rivera Early Carrer

Rivera had also ridden along with Johnson’s son, a fellow officer in the Gresham District where the superintendent started his own career.

“What we know about this incident so far is just really disgusting,” Supt. Eddie Johnson said at Chicago police headquarters. “Mark my words: we will find them.”

John P. Rivera Job Criteria

Rivera, a Gresham District patrolman who would have marked two years on the force in May, went to the popular nightlife district with a fellow male officer after they finished their Friday night shift, Johnson said.

They left the Stout Barrel House with two friends, a man and woman, and got into a Honda Civic parked in the 700 block of North Clark about 3:30 a.m., according to police.

John P. Rivera Suspect Killers Bio

That’s when at least three unknown males walked up to the car, and, without exchanging words, one of them pulled out a gun to fire shots into the car before they ran away, police said.

John P. Rivera Death CCTV Video

Surveillance video showed the shooter’s group targeted the off-duty officers’ car. Johnson said the shooting “appears to be random.”

Nothing was taken from the people in the car, and police said the two groups didn’t seem to have encountered each other earlier in the night.

“This appears to be an unprovoked attack against a group of individuals who went out to unwind on a Friday night,” he said.

Officers on patrol nearby heard the gunfire, saw people running and responded within seconds, police said. They immediately stopped two people, one of whom was released.

John P. Rivera Gunshots

Rivera, a Hegewisch resident, was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital with gunshot wounds to the chest, arm and mouth, authorities said. He was pronounced dead about 20 minutes later.

John P. Rivera Age

The 23-year-old man sitting behind Rivera in the car, who is not an officer, was shot in the chest and arms, police said. He was in critical “but stable” condition, and he underwent surgery Saturday morning.

The other off-duty officer and woman in the car were not hurt, police said.

Detectives were still poring through hours of more video from the area of the shooting, which is awash with surveillance cameras.

Managers at Stout and several other area establishments declined to comment Saturday afternoon, as the stretch of Clark Street near the shooting remained blocked off for investigation.

The highly trafficked area is a short distance from numerous bars, restaurants and Holy Name Cathedral. It’s also a short walk away from Sound Bar, where a security guard was killed during an early-morning shootout outside that club earlier this month.

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