Police: It Could Be Weeks Before Man Charged in Forest Park Apartment Balcony Shooting

It could be weeks before evidence comes back from state crime lab.

It could be weeks before charges are filed against a 25-year-old Forest Park man who police believe fired off several rounds from the balcony of his apartment late Saturday night, police said.

The man has been arrested for reckless discharge of a firearm, but formal charges cannot be filed until the report comes back from the state crime lab, Dep. Chief Tom Aftanas said.

Police say they need to learn if several .45 caliber shell casings recovered from the parking lot and inside an apartment in the 300 block of Des Plaines Avenue were fired from an unloaded .45 Springfield Armory found in a coat hanging from the front door of the apartment, said Dep. Chief Tom Aftanas.

"It could take more than a month," Aftanas said. "I have no idea of the turnaround rate at this point."

Evidence, including two handguns and live ammunition and shell casings, were gathered at the scene after the incident, which led a number of people in the area of the apartment to call police around 10:45 p.m. Saturday evening.

Aftanas said police also plan to assess the 25-year-old's claim that he had a FOID card and that it had been cancelled after his wallet had been recently stolen.

A Firearm Owner's Identification Card is required for any resident in Illinois to own or buy firearms.

Two people were in the apartment at the time of the incident. A 17-year-old who is not related to the suspect, is in protective custody, and is under investigation for the weapons charge and lying about her age. She also is a witness in the incident, Aftanas said.

Police received several calls around 10:45 p.m. reporting that the callers heard shots fired nearby. At first, dispatch relayed that two subjects were being shot at in the area of the 7400 block of Washington Boulevard.

As many as nine officers came to the scene. Police determined that the shots were fired from the north side of a building in the 300 block of Des Plaines and set up a perimeter around the area.

A tow truck driver told police he pulled into the lot in the 300 block of Des Plaines where he saw a man standing on the uppermost center balcony and then saw another person vigorously moving the blinds on the same balcony.

Officers went from unit to unit in the building and eyewitnesses pointed to the third floor patio balcony as the location where as many as six shots were fired, police said.

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