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The Village of Oak Lawn sent a letter to residents this week informing them of a police training drill scheduled for Sunday, Aug. 25th between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. at Oak Lawn High School. The drill described in the letter as a "full scale exercise" is being described by Oak Lawn Patch as an "active shooter" drill. (read Patch in-depth story)
Burbank residents registered for the Emergency Alert Program may have received the following alert via email or text message Friday morning:
THE OAK LAWN POLICE DEPARTMENT WILL BE CONDUCTING A FULL SCALE EXERCISE AT THE OAK LAWN COMMUNITY HIGH SCHOOL ON SUNDY AUGUST 25TH FROM 8AM UNTIL 2PM. A LARGE NUMBER OF POLICE,FIRE AND OTHER EMERGENCY VEHICLES AND PERSONNEL WILL BE WORKING IN THE AREA OF THE HIGH SCHOOL AND CHRIST HOSPITAL. ACCESS TO AUSTIN FROM 95TH TO 93RD WILL BE RESTRICTED. THIS IS A PLANNED EXERCISE AND NOT AN ACTUAL EMERGENCY. RESIDENTS SHOULD NOT BE ALARMED AND CAN READ ABOUT THIS EXERCISE ON THE VILLAGE WEB SITE. AGAIN THIS IS A PLANNED EXERCISE AND NOT AN ACTUAL EMERGENCY.
The Oak Lawn letter cautions, "You may see large numbers of emergency vehicles and equipment such as ambulances, fire trucks, and squad cars in the vicinity of the high school and in transit to Advocate Christ Hospital. Please do not be alarmed, this is only a drill. You may see flashing lights from the emergency vehicles, but we will not be turning on sirens in an effort to keep noise disturbance low."
Burbank residents should be aware that traffic may be impacted and may want to avoid 95th Street between Oak Lawn High School and Advocate Christ Medical Center during the drill. Austin Avenue will be closed between 93rd and 95th Streets.
Oak Lawn, IL
A police situation in Oak Lawn this morning quickly escalated and residents were warned to stay indoors after a subject barricaded themselves at a residence in the 9200 block of S 55th Ct.
Police rerouted traffic in the area of 92nd Street and 55th Ct as early as 7:40 a.m. and nearby St. Gerald School at 9320 South 55th Ct was placed on a soft lockdown. The following community alert was sent via text, email, and telephone from the Oak Lawn police:
OAK LAWN POLICE DEPT 041513
Shortly after 8 a.m., police units from The South Suburban Emergency Response Team (SSERT) began to arrive on scene. Police assets from Burbank, Chicago Heights, Lynwood, Flossmoor, and Cook County were observed at the location and a mobile command post was established on the corner of 55th Ave and 92nd St. A sniper team was visible in the backyard of the home at 9208 S 55th Ave.
As a CBS 2 Chicago news truck arrived and began filming the situation, a group of worried residents seeking information began to gather near the corner where the command post was setup. Rumors swirled as to the cause of the barricade. Oak Lawn resident Adam Oczkowski stated that an Oak Lawn police officer told him, "It was a domestic battery, the wife is blockaded in the house with a handgun at the moment."
Around 9:45 a.m. there was a loud explosion which startled the neighbors gathered just outside the police blockade. Onlookers speculated that the blast may have come from a concussion grenade used by police to stun the subject. Moments later an ambulance pulled up in front of the subject's house. Shortly thereafter police units began to stand down.
As SSERT members began to disband, an officer when asked if the situation had a happy ending responded "Oh yeah, everyone is alright."
Around 10:10 a.m. another community alert was issued:
April 15, 2013 at 1010 A.M. The Oak Lawn Police advise that the situation in the 9200 block of 55th Court has been resolved. Normal activities may be resumed.
Police began to quickly pack their gear and depart the area.
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