Chicago police officer gunned down outside home was 24-year-old who just got off work

A 24-year-old Chicago police officer was gunned down outside her South Side home Saturday, according to authorities.

Areanah Preston had served in the Chicago Police Department for three years in the Fifth District, authorities said.

Preston, after working a night shift, returned home around 1:45 a.m. Saturday, according to police. Around that time, police received an alert of shots fired on her block.

“Officers responded and found one of our own suffering gunshot wounds,” the department’s interim superintendent, Eric Carter, said during an emotional news briefing.

A responding officer rendered aid at the scene and rushed her to the University of Chicago Medical Center in the back of a squad car, he said. She succumbed to her injuries at the hospital – the same one where fellow Chicago Police Officer Ella French was taken.

“Right now, we ask that you keep the officer and her family in your prayers, as well as the men and women of the Chicago Police Department, who sacrifice everything, including their lives, on the line for this city every day,” Carter said.

According to the Fraternal Order of Police, she was shot while trying to defend herself from an armed robbery.

Police on Monday morning said they still had no suspects in custody in the officer’s murder.

According to her Facebook profile, Preston had studied criminal justice and criminology at Illinois State University and gone on to Loyola University in Chicago.