Off-duty Chicago police officer Areanah Preston killed right in front of her home

One of Chicago’s bravest was killed right in front of her own home. Police responded to 81st and Blackstone in Avalon Park after multiple gunshots were heard. Off-duty Chicago Police officer Areanah Preston, 24, was found laying in the front yard. Sources say her service weapon was stolen.

Chicago police aren’t releasing a lot of specifics about this case. Mayor Lightfoot says the family has asked for privacy. Detectives are working to learn if the victim was targeted or perhaps the victim of a robbery.

Loved ones are grief-stricken after learning the news outside U of C Hospital. 

"The officer picked her up, put her in the back of his car, and immediately brought her to U of C hospital where she succumbed to her injuries early this morning," said Interim Police Superintendent Eric Carter said.

Carter says Preston had just finished her work shift. Preston worked for the department for three years.

Loyola University confirms she was on track to graduate May 13 with a Masters of Jurisprudence from the School of Law.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot spoke with family members earlier in the day and says their lives have been shattered.

"When I got the call this morning, I wasn’t just a Mayor, I was a mom thinking about what the parents of this young officer are feeling today," Lightfoot said.

Dozens of Chicago police joined a processional as Preston’s body was taken from U of C to the Medical Examiner’s office. Mayor Elect Brandon Johnson in a statement said 

"I’m outraged and devastated by this horrific violence against a public servant and will do everything to support the family and CPD during this traumatic time," said Mayor-Elect Brandon Johnson in a statement.

Preston was assigned to CPD’s 5th district at 727 E. 111th, many of her colleagues described her as intelligent and well-liked. Chicago police say no suspects are in custody at this time.