ROCKFORD — Three men have been captured and arrested on charges of attempted murder after Rockford police accused them of trying kill an officer.

Christopher Stucke, 21, Maurice Citchen, 19, and Jade Carter, 18, all of Rockford, face charges of attempted murder of a police officer and aggravated discharge of a firearm. Citchen additionally faces a charge of possession of a stolen vehicle.

The three may not have been captured as quickly without a tip from the public, Chief Carla Redd said in a news release.

“The men and women of the police department do an outstanding job serving and protecting this community,” Redd said. “I appreciate the public stepping up, and we look forward to continuing to work side-by-side to make Rockford a safer place.” 

According to a Rockford Police Department news release, an officer in a surveillance vehicle was patrolling about 6 p.m. Thursday in the area of North Court and John streets when he saw a stolen vehicle.

The officer began to follow the vehicle at a distance while waiting for backup to arrive. The vehicle performed a U-turn in the area of Grant Avenue and Reynolds Street. Occupants of the vehicle opened fire with handguns as they passed the officer’s vehicle, striking it several times and pursuing the officer’s vehicle as it tried to escape, the release stated.

Other officers arrived and attempted to stop the vehicle unsuccessfully. Residents called police about people leaving a car and running away in the area of 17th Street and 12th Avenue. Police said they were able to capture the suspects with the assistance of other area police departments.

“As we look at the young ages of the suspects, this shows us that we need to do more work with our youth community partners to help curb the violent behavior perpetrated by young people,” Redd said.