There’s very sobering news coming out of DeKalb this afternoon as its being reported that a starting member of the Northern Illinois football team is hospitalized following a shooting Tuesday night.
According to the DeKalb Daily Chronicle, and confirmed by the school, NIU linebacker Devon Butler was shot during an incident at an off-campus apartment building last night and is listed in critical condition as of late Wednesday morning. Police officials told the paper that they have two suspects in custody, but details of what led to the shooting aren’t clear at this time.
A fire official said that a man, later identified as Butler, was shot once — it’s unclear where he was shot — and was taken to a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. Butler was later transferred to another hospital. DeKalb Police Chief Bill Feithen, the Daily Chronicle writes, said Wednesday morning that the victim was still alive.
NIU is expected to release a statement later today on the developing situation.
The junior finished second on the team in tackles last season, and his performance earned him third-team All-MAC honors.
Our heartfelt thoughts and prayers go out to Butler and his entire family, both immediate and extended.
UPDATED 3:06 p.m. ET: The DeKalb police chief told the Daily Chronicle that he is “cautiously optimistic” Butler will recover, while his department has also released a statement revealing additional details that led to the shooting.
At 11:56 p.m. on Tuesday, April 5th DeKalb police received a report of gunshots in the area of Aspen Drive and Hillcrest Drive in DeKalb. An ambulance was also requested. DeKalb investigators determined that shots were fired from a vehicle at Apartment 3, 1009 Aspen Drive. One of those shots penetrated the window in Apartment #3 and struck Northern Illinois junior linebacker Devon Butler, a visitor at the apartment.
DeKalb investigators determined Apartment #3 at 1009 Aspen Drive was targeted as a result of a drug transaction that occurred earlier Tuesday. DeKalb Police Chief Bill Feithen emphasized that there is no indication that NIU student Devon Butler had any knowledge of nor was involved or present during that drug transaction earlier in the day. Devon Butler arrived at the apartment late Tuesday evening to meet with friends.
The DeKalb police investigation is proceeding quickly and two suspects are now in custody and charged with attempted first degree murder (Class X felony), aggravated battery with a firearm (Class X felony), aggravated discharge of a firearm (Class 1 felony), and unlawful delivery of cannabis (Class 4 felony). The suspects charged include Mark O. Orozco age 24 and Richard F. Van Arsdale, III, 20 years old, both of DeKalb.