Zion police release body cam footage of fatal officer-involved shooting

The Zion Police Department released body camera footage Tuesday that shows an officer fatally shoot an armed man earlier this month in the northern suburb.

The footage shows officers approach George W. Franklin III behind a residence in the 2800 block of Ezra Avenue on the evening of Sept. 8 after receiving a call from the man's mother that he was attempting to force his way inside her home.

When officers began speaking to him, Franklin pulled out a firearm and began firing shots, the video showed. The officers retreated without returning fire, according to a preliminary investigation.


Police said Franklin, 47, then ran about a block west near Gabriel Avenue with the firearm still in hand, where he was confronted by a third Zion officer responding to the call. Franklin was ordered to drop the gun, but refused, and was shot during an exchange of gunfire with the officer, according to police.

Video footage showed several officers approach Franklin behind a ballistic shield as he laid wounded on a sidewalk. A revolver containing five spent shell casings was recovered inches from Franklin's right hand, police said.

Officers attempted life-saving efforts on Franklin before he was taken to Vista East Medical Center in Waukegan, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

No officers were injured in the shooting, but the officer who shot Franklin was transported to an area hospital for evaluation, police said.

Police said Franklin's mother obtained an order of protection against her son earlier that day, however, Franklin had not yet been served with the order.

The Lake County Major Crime Task Force continues to investigate.