A 34-year-old Elgin woman was killed in an officer-involved shooting Monday (March 12, 2018) after she allegedly brandished a knife and officers attempted to pull her from a burning vehicle on I-90.
Today (Tuesday, March 13, 2018) authorities have identified the woman as DeCynthia Clements of Elgin and the officer involved as veteran SWAT team member Lt. Christian Jensen.
A direct line of communication has been provided to the family of the shooting victim, including meeting with them, to ensure accessibility to department resources and information, Elgin police said.
According to a news release posted on the Elgin Police Department Facebook page, officers made contact with a suspicious vehicle at around 12:34 a.m. Monday in the area of Cedar Avenue in Elgin.
During the encounter, Clements from the scene in her vehicle. Officers attempted to stop the vehicle, and subsequently the pursuit was terminated, Elgin police said.
A short time later, Clements’ vehicle was located westbound on I-90 near Route 25 with obvious damage, police said. Elgin officers made contact with Clements and observed she was armed with a knife.
According to reports, officers then disengaged from the vehicle and proceeded to negotiate with her for more than an hour. During that time, Clements would periodically move her car several feet.
At one point, officers noticed a fire had started inside the vehicle. They approached the burning vehicle to pull her out, police said.
“There was an exchange which we are still investigating during which the officer discharged (his or her) weapon,” Elgin Police Chief Jeffrey Swaboda said.
Clements was transported to St. Alexius Hospital in Hoffman Estates, where she was pronounced deceased.
The woman’s identification was withheld until notification was made to family members.
The Illinois State Police are investigating the officer-involved shooting portion of the investigation, per Illinois state statute.
“I wish to express our condolences to the family,” Swoboda said. “We are all very saddened by this incident.”
Swaboda said Jensen has been with the department for 19 years and has received 22 commendations and/or awards between the years of 2002-2017, inclusive of the 2014 Manager of the Year.
SOURCE: Elgin Police Department