(CHICAGO TRIBUNE – Robert McCoppin and Amanda Marrazzo): McHenry County sheriff’s Deputy Dwight Maness, who was shot on duty and seriously wounded last year, died of a blood clot in his lungs, the county coroner announced late Tuesday.
Maness, 47, died Monday during a rehabilitation exercise related to his recovery from his gunshot wounds, State’s Attorney Louis Bianchi said. Bianchi called Maness a hero.
He was pronounced dead at just after 1:30 p.m. at Centegra McHenry Medical Center, where he was taken after going into cardiopulmonary arrest at another local facility, according to a coroner’s office news release.
Maness and fellow Deputy Khalia Satkiewicz had gone to a home in Holiday Hills on Oct. 16, 2014, to check on a possible domestic disturbance when a man at the home begin shooting at them through his front door window.
The gunman, Scott Peters, came out of the house and continued shooting at the officers, eventually striking both, while backup officers exchanged gunfire with Peters and pulled the officers to safety, according to harrowing testimony at Peters’ trial.
Peters, who was arrested after a long manhunt, was convicted of attempted murder in April and sentenced to 135 years in prison. But authorities said they will consider charging him with murder if Maness’ death is found to be related to the injuries he suffered when Peters shot him.
On Tuesday, the sheriff’s office asked an outside agency, the county’s Major Investigation Assistance Team, to investigate Maness’ death.
The sheriff’s office said funeral arrangements for Maness were pending.
Peters’ gunfire struck Maness in the back and leg, and he underwent several surgeries and medical setbacks, including a break in his nonwounded leg, a friend and neighbor said.
He had hoped to get back to work but was still facing a long recovery and had just begun rehab on his leg.
Maness’ spirits appeared to be upbeat regarding his recovery when he posted on Facebook on Sept. 2, his birthday.
“The doctor said I can start putting at least 50% of my weight on my left leg and can finally start rehab next week. Thanks to all of my friends, family the department for the continued support. … With everything going on it’s hard to be happy, but we continue to celebrate life.”
The last sentence was an apparent reference to the shooting death the day before of Fox Lake police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz. Maness had told the Tribune on Sept. 2 that Gliniewicz’s death was another reminder of the risks police face and that he wished he could have been part of the search for the three men authorities identified as suspects.
Maness and Satkiewicz attended Gliniewicz’s funeral that weekend with their families and Deputy Eric Luna, the officer who exchanged fire with Peters the night Maness and Satkiewicz were shot.
Still in a wheelchair, Maness looked on as several uniformed officers made their way into Antioch High School for the service, saying quietly: “Oh, I wouldn’t miss this.”
Flags were at half-staff Tuesday at the McHenry County complex in honor of Maness.