Mourners gather for slain Illinois police officer’s funeral

DECATUR, Ill. (AP) — Law enforcement officers from around Illinois gathered at Maranatha Assembly of God in Decatur on Wednesday for the funeral of Champaign Police Officer Chris Oberheim, who was shot to death May 19 while responding to a domestic disturbance call.

Rows of police officers stood silently at parade rest outside the church as family and friends mourned the slain police officers inside. Parked in front of the church was a Champaign police car, draped in black ribbon.

The waiting officers snapped to attention at an order shouted from the front steps of the church and saluted as the flag-draped casket containing the remains of Oberheim were carried to a waiting hearse to the sounds of a pipe and drum corps.

Oberheim, 44, began his law enforcement career as a Decatur police officer, serving in the department for seven years before he joined the Champaign Police Department in 2008.

Accompanied by a motorcycle escort, a procession led by the hearse headed to Monticello Township Cemetery for Oberheim’s burial. The route was lined with people out to pay their respects to Oberheim and his family.

Oberheim was killed during a shootout at a Champaign apartment complex. Officers had gone there in response to a report of a domestic disturbance and encountered the armed suspect. A second officer was wounded. The suspect, Darion Marquise Lafayette, 24, of Champaign, was killed in the shootout.

Champaign County court records show Lafayette had previous arrests for domestic violence and drug possession.

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