Three South Side teenagers were taken into custody and questioned about the murder of an off-duty Chicago police officer, but were released without charges being filed.
Michael Bailey, 62, who planned to retire next month, was shot in an apparent robbery attempt early Sunday outside his home in the 7400 block of South Evans Avenue.
The three males — ages 16, 17 and 18 — were all taken into custody at Calumet Area headquarters, 727 E. 111th St., police sources said. One teen said he was picked up by police Thursday and questioned about Bailey's murder. He said he was released Friday afternoon.
The other two teens were no longer in custody as of Saturday afternoon, police sources said.
Asked for comment Saturday evening, the department's News Affairs office said there would be none. An officer said numerous people have been interviewed in connection with Bailey's death.
The 20-year veteran officer was assigned to the Central District, which encompasses the Loop and he had just finished an overnight shift guarding the mayor's home, officials said. Bailey returned to his South Manor home where he was polishing his new Buick Regal, which he had bought himself as a retirement gift, when he was killed.
During Bailey's funeral Friday, angry and frustrated voices thundered from the pulpit, filling up St. Sabina Church's cavernous sanctuary, as one speaker after another implored the public to help root out the cowardly violence that killed Bailey -- the third officer to be murdered in as many months.
A red-faced Mayor Richard Daley demanded an end to the "distrust" that some feel for the city's police. His words drew sustained applause inside the majestic South Side church, where Bailey's body lay in a flag-draped, slate-blue casket.
"Michael Bailey served and protected us," said Daley. "He came from our community. He grew up here. So no more distrust of police officers."
Meanwhile, a reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the killer has risen to $100,000, thanks to a $50,000 donation from the FBI.
To date, the Fraternal Order of Police, the Chicago Police Memorial Foundation and NOBLE (the National Organization of Black Law Enforcement Executives) have all contributed to the reward fund, according to a police News Affairs release.
Joe Spretnjak, of the J.M. Spretnjak Insurance Agency, also made a donation on behalf of the Disabled Illinois Police Officer Safety Group, the release said.