Off-duty cop brings baby home, but stops robbery first

Tribune reporter

Monday was an exciting day for off-duty Evergreen Park police officer Chris LeCompte. He got to take his newborn baby boy home, but first he had to thwart a robbery in a cafeteria at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

"It was an exciting day, but it didn't need to be that exciting," the 33-year-old LeCompte said with a laugh.

About 1:30 p.m., the off-duty officer, a 3-year veteran of the Evergreen Park Police Department, had run down to grab a bite to eat while his wife was upstairs getting ready to leave with their son. It had been a long wait for this moment -- the boy had been born prematurely two weeks ago and the couple had been visiting their infant every day at Prentice Women's Hospital, 250 E. Superior St.

"I was sitting down, eating, and there was a woman behind me who started to yell," said LeCompte, who went to check on the commotion.

"There were two guys wrestling on the ground and I just jumped in," said LeCompte, who did not have his duty weapon or any handcuffs.

One of the men, like the officer about 6 feet 2 inches tall and weighing about 220 pounds, began trying to throw punches at LeCompte.

"He tried to scratch on me and punch me," said LeCompte, who was able to subdue the man and hold him until security officers got there.

According to Cook County State's Attorney's Office spokeswoman Lisa Gordon, that man is Sean McBrady, 30, of Evanston. Today Judge Adam Bourgeois set bail at $150,000 for McBrady, who is accused of felony robbery after taking a cellphone from a woman who was 9 months pregnant, said Gordon, citing court documents.

"The defendant walked by and took it and the victim told her husband who went after the defendant to get the phone back," Gordon said.

The victim was in a wheelchair when a man grabbed her $600 iPhone 5 as she had risen out of the chair to go eat with her family in the cafeteria area, according to a police report.

Her husband had to be taken to the emergency room because he'd suffered a possible broken finger, according to the report. McBrady was arrested at 2:03 p.m. at the hospital, police said.

The husband and wife were "very appreciative," said LeCompte, who said he'd never made an arrest off-duty and looks forward to telling his son about "going home day.''

"Absolutely he has a good story," said the new father.

"I was glad to help."

McBrady, of the 1400 block of Chicago Avenue in Evanston, is expected in court again on July 8, said Gordon.
Twitter: @RosemarySobol1

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