Two related crimes starting with a police car-ramming incident in Antioch, ended along Route 41 in Gurnee and a 31-year-old woman killed by police.
Jordan J. Huff, 37, was also taken into taken into custody May 23. Makell Meyerin was shot by Gurnee officers negotiating with her to put down a long-barrel firearm, walking along the southbound lanes near the Grand Avenue exit, and began moving toward officers with the weapon pointed in their direction.
Assistance was rendered at the scene, until emergency responders took her to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville, where she was pronounced dead. Lake County Coroner Dr. Howard Cooper said the victim was “shot under five times,” during an autopsy, conducted the next day with no further information being released. Toxicology tests are pending.
Release reports were obtained through the Lake County Major Crimes Task Force, which had been called for assistance by the home law enforcement agencies in both incidents.
At approximately 1:20 p.m., Gurnee officers found Meyerin and Huff asleep in a Toyota Prius, which had a bullet hole, at the intersection of Harper and Gould streets. Huff was displaying signs of overdose symptoms, according to the police, and called for medical assistance. Paramedics arrived on the scene, and while talking with Meyerin, she put the vehicle into gear, and struck a fire department vehicle in fleeing the scene.
The vehicle was followed to Chittenden Park, a dead-end playground area on Grandeville Road, where she crashed the car near a wetland area after a short circular chase on the green. She exited the vehicle, leaving Huff, and displayed a long-barrel firearm in making her way to the Route 41, through an access cut.
Meyerin walked along the southbound lanes, appearing “erratic” in her behavior, as officers made several attempts to negotiate with her. She also approached a vehicle, weapon in hand, but the driver moved away. She was shot and killed by officers in moving toward them with the weapon pointed in their direction. Law enforcement agencies subsequently blocked Route 41, from Delaney Road to Washington Street to preserve the crime scene for investigation.
Huff, who had been left unconscious in the vehicle, was taken to a nearby hospital where he was treated and released into police custody. He was later charged with Aggravated Fleeing and Eluding (Class 4 felony), Criminal Damage to State Supported Property (Class 4 felony), and Resisting a Peace Officer (Class A misdemeanor), after it was determined he was the driver in the Antioch police car-ramming, of which, Meyerin was a passenger. Huff appeared in court May 25, and remains in custody, pending a $100,000 bond.
The day began at 6:30 a.m., in an Antioch subdivision, as police responded to a solicitor complaint that a male and female were knocking on doors along Donin Drive, asking for money. The two individuals, with one other person, then began driving away in a white Volkswagen convertible, disregarding stop orders, ramming a squad car in the process. A long-barrel firearm was seen, as the car drove off, and there were also reports of a gunshot.
Eluding police, the car was driven to a residence on North Route 83, when one occupant fled into the home, and the other two ran to a nearby house. They allegedly obtained a white Toyota Prius, from a relative of the male, later identified as Huff, and left the area. Lake County Sheriff’s Department help block access on Route 83, from Grass Lake Road into Antioch, as a negotiating standoff, lasting several hours, occurred with a male and female at the residence where the car was driven, and one passenger ran inside.
They were taken into custody, and eventually released after questioning, when authorities were able to determine the two individuals were not involved with the Donin Drive incident, although the female was the third passenger in the Volkswagen.
By May 25, Det. Chris Covelli, LCMCTF spokesperson, said investigators were working to piece together the full narrative of the two incidents as an ongoing investigation, along with any potential relationship with a May 21 bank robbery at the Gurnee branch of the NorStates Bank in the 500 block of Grand Avenue.
The lead agency is the Chicago office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, which released information that a male and female wearing red masks entered the facility armed with what appeared to be a long-barrel firearm like an AK-47 assault rifle.
The FBI did not respond to media requests for further information, other than being directed to surveillance photos from cameras inside the bank.
—Suspects tied to related cross-county incidents; one dead–