Man Shot 3 Coworkers, Killing 1, At WeatherTech: Bolingbrook Police


As the overnight shift at the distribution center was nearing its end early Saturday morning, temporary employee Charles C. McKnight Jr. was confronted by his coworkers, police said. McKnight had robbed two fellow employees at gunpoint, stealing a watch and a wallet, according to police. An argument ensued and McKnight pulled out a handgun, shooting three people and fleeing on foot, police said.

Central Hightower, 37, of Plainfield, was killed, according to police. A 25-year-old man who had been robbed by McKnight was in critical condition Saturday evening, and a 43-year-old man who had been shot had already been released from the hospital, according to police, who said the shooting did not appear to be premeditated.

“On behalf of our Mayor Mary Alexander Basta, the Village of Bolingbrook, our police department and WeatherTech — our thoughts and prayers are extended to the victims and their families,” Chief of Police Mike Rompa said in a news release.

Officers responded about 6:30 a.m. to 1 WeatherTech Way and took McKnight into custody three hours later without a struggle, police said. Authorities had searched the distribution center building and surrounding area with numerous officers, K-9s and drones before tracking down McNight on a residential property in the 500 block of Larkspur Lane, according to police, who said they also recovered a handgun.

McKnight, 27, of the 10000 block of Perry Avenue in Chicago, is charged with one count of first-degree murder and two counts of attempted first-degree murder, according to police, who said additional charges are pending.

As a temporary worker, McKnight had only been assigned to WeatherTech for about two weeks, police said. WeatherTech makes automotive accessories such as window deflectors, truckbed covers, seat protectors and floor mats. Its logistics campus, manufacturing center and dealer will call are all located at 1 WeatherTech Way, which is across Remington Boulevard from AdventHealth Bolingbrook.

U.S. Rep. Bill Foster, D-11, issued a statement Saturday afternoon in response to the shooting.

“Today, our community has been shattered by yet another act of senseless gun violence,” he said.

“This is a statement I had hoped I would never have to make again in my career. Just three years ago, a shooting at Henry Pratt in Aurora took five innocent lives and injured six police officers. Fourteen years ago, one of my first official acts as a Congressman was to attend memorial services for the victims of the NIU shootings in DeKalb. No one should have to worry about random gun violence while going about their normal lives, and we cannot accept this as a new reality.”