Xandria Harris bond hearing

Kankakee County State’s Attorney Jim Rowe addresses Judge Kathy Bradshaw-Elliott on Monday during the bond hearing for Xandria Harris. As part of the evidence he presented seeking Harris’ continued incarceration, he gave a detailed account of what happened Dec. 29 as learned from Sgt. Marlene Rittmanic’s body cam footage.

Editor’s note: The following is the unabridged, unedited account of the Dec. 29 shooting of two Bradley police officers as given to a Kankakee County judge via official court documents on Monday. Kankakee County State’s Attorney Jim Rowe said this information was gleaned from viewing footage from a body cam worn by fallen Sgt. Marlene Rittmanic. Due to some graphic descriptions, we caution readers who may find such information unsettling. The Daily Journal is printing this official account as we believe the severity of the incident and its impact on the community warrants publication.

“On December 29, 2021, Bradley Police Sergeant Marlene Rittmanic and Bradley Police Officer Tyler Bailey responded to the Comfort Inn Hotel in Bradley, Illinois, to address a complaint regarding barking dogs that were left in a guest’s vehicle.

“Officer Bailey arrived on scene at approximately 9:56 p.m. that evening. Upon his arrival, he runs the license plates of the suspect vehicle and it returns to the defendant, Xandria Harris. Bailey enters the hotel lobby where he meets with Sgt. Rittmanic.

“Bailey asks a clerk at the hotel whether there are any rooms under the name of Xandria Harris or Darius Sullivan. Bailey has knowledge of Xandria Harris, knows her to frequently be in the presence of Darius Sullivan, and has knowledge that Darius Sullivan is wanted on outstanding warrants of arrest for failure to appear in court.

“Bailey also has knowledge at this time that Sullivan had previously fled from Bradley police officers who attempted to apprehend him on the warrants.

“The hotel clerk informs Officer Bailey and Sgt. Rittmanic that room 308 has the name of Darius Sullivan attached to the room.

“Sgt. Rittmanic and Officer Bailey proceed up the stairs of the hotel to the third floor and proceed to room 308. The officers’ stated intention at the time was to issue [Harris] a local ordinance violation for the dogs being left in the vehicle, and to take Darius Sullivan into custody on the warrants.

“At 10:13 p.m., officers first knock on the door of room 308. There is no response.

“At 10:14 p.m., officers knock a second time. Officer Bailey loudly announces their presence ‘It’s the police department’ and explains that they need her to exit the room to address the complaint regarding the dogs. A female voice who we have come to learn was [Harris] responds ‘yes’ and indicates she will be coming out of the room.

“At 10:17 p.m., Officer Bailey knocks a third time. He asks, “Are you coming, ma’am?” A female voice, again [Harris], responds, ‘Yes, I have to get dressed.’ Officer Bailey insists that she exit the room to address the complaint; [Harris] states she will be right there.

“At 10:23 p.m., Officer Bailey knocks a fourth time. [Harris] responds, ‘Ok, I’m coming.’ Officer Bailey inquires as to who else is in the room with [Harris] — she replies: “Me, my sister and kids.”

“At 10:25 p.m., Officer Bailey knocks a fifth time. [Harris] responds ‘OK, I’m coming.’

“At 10:27 p.m., after officers have waited 14 minutes and knocks at the door five times, [Harris] opens the door. [Harris] attempts to squeeze past the door and close it to prevent officers from taking Darius Sullivan — who was present in the room — into custody. Both Officer Bailey and Sgt. Rittmanic ask [Harris] over and over again to stop blocking them in the doorway and to stop struggling with the door, Sullivan comes from around the corner in the hotel room holding a 9mm equipped with a drum clip.

“As [Harris] continues to prevent Officer Bailey and Sgt. Rittmanic from performing their duties as peace officers, Sullivan points the firearm at Officer Bailey and shoots Officer Bailey in the head. Sullivan then fires a first shot at Sgt. Rittmanic as she attempts to exit the kill zone.

“Sullivan chases Sgt. Rittmanic down the hallway of the hotel and pins her up against a door. At this time, Darius Sullivan’s firearm has jammed. Darius Sullivan is attempting to unjam his firearm using his right hand and mouth while at the same attempting to disarm Sgt. Rittmanic of her duty weapon with his left hand.

“During the struggle, [Harris] walks down the hotel hallway to where Darius Sullivan and Sgt. Rittmanic are struggling.

“Sullivan tells [Harris] to ‘cock the gun, cock the gun’ referring to his jammed firearm. [Harris] reaches around the waist of Sullivan — who at the time is still struggling with Sgt. Rittmanic — and assists Sullivan in his attempt to cock the firearm and/or disarm Sgt. Rittmanic.

“As a result of [Harris’] assistance, Darius Sullivan is able to disarm Sgt. Rittmanic.

“Once [Harris] and Sullivan had disarmed Sgt. Rittmanic, they stood over Sgt. Rittmanic as she lay on the floor, already having been shot once. [Harris] stood over Sgt. Rittmanic while holding Sullivan’s 9mm and/or the drum clip. Sullivan then told [Harris] to ‘give me the keys.’

“As [Harris] went to hand the keys to Darius Sullivan, Darius Sullivan fired two shots from what we believe was Sgt. Rittmanic’s duty weapon, striking Sgt. Rittmanic in or about the throat and/or neck.

“At this time, [Harris] handed the keys to Sullivan and told him, ‘You have to go.’ At the time Sullivan fired the fatal shots into Sgt. Rittmanic, Sgt. Rittmanic was pleading with them ‘to just leave, you don’t have to do this, please just go, please don’t, please don’t,’ she was desperately pleading for her life.

“Sullivan fled down the stairwell of the hotel and left in a vehicle. [Harris] then retreated to the hotel room, gathered up her belongings and two children who were in the room at the time, and fled the hotel separate from Sullivan.

“Both officers were in full police uniform at the time of this offense. Sgt. Rittmanic succumbed from the gunshot wounds later that evening. Officer Bailey remains hospitalized and fighting for his life.

“[Harris] actively assisted and enabled Darius Sullivan throughout the course of the murder of Sgt. Rittmanic and attempted murder of Officer Bailey, and she is equally responsible.

“Darius Sullivan is in custody in Indiana where we are awaiting a governor’s warrant to extradite him to our jurisdiction. He too has been charged with multiple counts of first degree murder. I have already filed a notice of intent to seek life sentences in both cases.”

Jeff Bonty is a reporter for The Daily Journal. He can be reached at jbonty@daily-journal.com and 815-937-3366.