Two Arrested in Ambush Murder of Chicago Police Officer John Rivera

Menelik Jackson, 24, and 32-year-old Jovan Battle, of Chicago's Little Village neighborhood, were both charged with one felony count of first degree murder and three felony counts of attempted murder, Chicago police said in a statement.
Chicago Police

Two men with criminal records were arrested and charged with the shooting death of off-duty Chicago police officer John Rivera.

The Chicago Police Department announced the arrest of Menelik Jackson, 24, and Jovan Battle, 32, for the March 23 shooting of officer Rivera, CLTV reported.

Both Jackson and Battle were charged with one felony count each of first-degree murder and three other felony counts each of varying crimes.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Jackson has a long record including domestic violence charges.

Officer Rivera, 23, was shot and killed as he after exiting a River North bar at 3:30 a.m. on March 23. Investigators say that there was no previous altercation and that officer Rivera was in the wrong place at the wrong time to become a victim of random violence.

Police said that Rivera was sitting in his vehicle when the suspects approached his car and opened fire striking the officer in the arm, chest, and face.

Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said that one of the shooters had been made fun of at the bar earlier in the evening and returned to open fire at the first Hispanic-looking person he saw.

“In an act of cowardice, Mr. Jackson went to get a gun to settle this petty dispute, which resulted in him murdering the first Hispanic man that he came in contact with,” Superintendent Johnson said.

Johnson added that the second suspect also has a long criminal history.

“Mr. Battle is no stranger to CPD,” the CPD boss said. “With an 18-page criminal history, he has ten convictions for violent crimes; including assault, battery, and felony narcotics.”

The CPD noted that they are still looking for a third suspect.

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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