North Chicago officials fire one police officer, suspend another

April 27, 2012

Quinn Ford

Public officials in the city of North Chicago announced one police officer will be fired and another suspended in connection with the violent arrest of a suspect last November.

The suspect, Darrin Hanna, died a week after his arrest. The Lake County coroner’s office reported Taser shocks and physical restraint contributed to Hanna’s death, as did drug abuse and other health problems.

North Chicago Police Chief James Jackson said Officer Brandon Yost would be fired immediately for violating the department’s use-of-force policy. Jackson said Yost put Hanna in a headlock and punched him in the face.

Jackson said Officer Arthur Strong would be suspended for 30 days for filing a false police report about the incident.

The announcement comes after protest from family and community members, as well as four separate investigations into the matter.

A total of seven officers responded to a complaint that Hanna was allegedly beating his pregnant girlfriend. At the time, Hanna had a warrant out for his arrest stemming from an aggravated battery charge.

Rev. Jesse Jackson was in North Chicago on Friday for the announcement. He said he’s not satisfied with the officers’ punishment.

“The punishment does not fit the crime,” Jackson said. “They beat him while he was down, and he died. We’re asking the Department of Justice to intervene because the local officials—the relationship is so incestuous—they can’t be trusted.”

The family of Darrin Hanna has filed a lawsuit against the City of North Chicago, according to a lawyer representing the city.