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Cop From Fatal 'Accidental' Double Shooting Named By The Tribune

By Rachel Cromidas in News on Jan 13, 2016 2:53PM

CHICAGO, IL - DECEMBER 27: Family, friends and supporters gather outside the home of Bettie Jones and Quintonio LeGrier during a vigil.(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The police officer who fatally shot a teenager and a 55-year-old neighbor just after Christmas has been identified by the Tribune.

The officer, Robert Rialmo, is a relative newcomer to the police force; he graduated from the police academy in March 2013, and coincidentally gave an interview to the Tribune about his first assignment—foot patrolling in Austin on the West Side.

Rialmo, then 23, told the Tribune he was a former Marine and that, "I really don't know what to expect. I'm really anxious, I'm nervous, I'm excited, all of the above." He said he had received training from the police in a slew of skills, including driving and shooting range practice, and that he wanted to use the opportunities he has had to improve Chicago.

"I feel like I was given the opportunity to grow up in a nice neighborhood, you know, have a good family, have a good background," said Rialmo, of the Edison Park neighborhood on the Northwest Side. "If I can do that for some other people, that's what I should be doing."

Due to a provision in the police union contract, the police department has not confirmed the identity of the officer, who is being investigated for misconduct and has been decried by anti-police brutality activists in the wake of the shooting. Both families are suing the city.

Rialmo allegedly responded to reports of a domestic disturbance in the 4700 block of West Erie Street in the early morning of Dec. 27. There, he fatally shot a 19-year-old Quintonio LeGrier, who was allegedly wielding a baseball bat, and his neighbor, 55-year-old Bettie Jones. Jones was not involved in the disturbance but happened to open her front door when the police officer began shooting, according to reports.