WBEZ | Fraternal Order of Police http://www.wbez.org/tags/fraternal-order-police Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en IPRA fails to pursue potential crime by cops caught on video http://www.wbez.org/news/ipra-fails-pursue-potential-crime-cops-caught-video-113018 <p><p>Video of a police raid on a tanning salon in 2013 shows Chicago Police officers engaging in potentially criminal activity. Some of that activity was reviewed by the Independent Police Review Authority, but other potential crimes by cops were ignored by the agency tasked with rooting out police misconduct in Chicago. It raises serious questions about IPRA and its commitment to police accountability, questions that IPRA has refused to answer.</p><p>The video comes from the surveillance system in the lobby of the Copper Tan Salon in Chicago. The camera is behind the counter near the ceiling so you see the top of the counter and some of the stuff behind the counter as well as the back of the employee working the desk. The lobby looks like any other waiting room, with a loveseat and chair by a glass-top coffee table. Soft rock plays.</p><p><a href="https://youtu.be/fHTTy9D8x2w?t=9m57s" target="_blank">Nine minutes and 57 seconds</a> into the video police enter the tanning salon. The woman working the front desk doesn&rsquo;t seem to realize the plainclothes officer is police and she asks if he called.</p><p>&ldquo;Did I have to?&rdquo; the officer responds. &ldquo;I don&rsquo;t think I had to &lsquo;cause I&rsquo;m the police.&rdquo;</p><p>Police grab the manager, an Asian woman named Jessica Klyzek, and she starts screaming hysterically. In an interview later with the Independent Police Review Authority Klyzek admitted that she also swung at officers and attempted to bite them.</p><p><strong>Officers realize they&rsquo;re on camera</strong></p><p>While officers restrain Klyzek, another cop walks behind the front desk and he notices a computer screen below the counter. He looks at it and realizes there&rsquo;s a video camera.</p><p>He points two fingers at his own eyes and calls out to everyone quote, &ldquo;Hey! Hey! There&rsquo;s eyes!&rdquo;</p><p>Det. Gerald Di Pasquale may not have heard that announcement because a couple minutes later he totally loses his cool with Klyzek, who is still yelling.</p><p><a href="https://youtu.be/fHTTy9D8x2w?t=15m53s" target="_blank">Di Pasquale starts yelling back at her</a>, saying,&ldquo;you&rsquo;re not f***ing American. I&rsquo;ll put you in a UPS box and send you back to wherever the f*** you came from.&rdquo; He then says he&rsquo;s going to shut down the salon, &ldquo;and then whoever owns this place will f****** kill you because they don&rsquo;t care about you, okay? I&rsquo;ll make one call and I&rsquo;ll take this building and you&rsquo;ll be dead and your family will be dead.&rdquo;</p><p>Another officer hits Klyzek in the head while she&rsquo;s handcuffed and kneeling on the ground.</p><p><strong>The recommended discipline</strong></p><p>IPRA is recommending a 25-day suspension for Di Pasquale and an 8-day suspension for the officer who punched Klyzek.</p><p>Asian-American community members are unhappy with that recommendation and are demanding the city fire the officers. The head of IPRA, Scott Ando, has refused to explain the seemingly light discipline for the officers.</p><p dir="ltr">You may be familiar with all that part of the story because we&rsquo;ve been reporting on it for the past few weeks. &nbsp;But there&rsquo;s another whole layer to this video--and potential police misconduct recorded here. &nbsp;</p><p>And that&rsquo;s &nbsp;another thing Ando has refused to explain: Why didn&rsquo;t IPRA investigate the other potentially criminal activity that&rsquo;s recorded on the video?</p><p style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/fHTTy9D8x2w?rel=0" width="420"></iframe></p><p><strong>Is this thing on?</strong></p><p>Throughout the video officers can be seen hunched over the computer monitor looking at the video of the scene. They murmur and you can hear the word &lsquo;recording&rsquo; once in awhile. But eventually the officers stop whispering and they <a href="https://youtu.be/fHTTy9D8x2w?t=32m30s" target="_blank">can be heard arguing over whether they are being recorded or not</a>.</p><p>&ldquo;This right here is recording,&rdquo; says an officer.</p><p>&ldquo;That doesn&rsquo;t mean it&rsquo;s recording. Just the time on there doesn&rsquo;t mean it&rsquo;s recording,&rdquo; responds another.</p><p>The officers then argue about a DVR player and how there&rsquo;s no disc in it so it can&rsquo;t be recording.</p><p>The officers then start brainstorming ways to get the recording, if it actually exists. You can hear them talk about extracting data but needing a search warrant. They seem to agree that the best solution is to seize the computer as evidence and hold it for investigation.</p><p>&ldquo;Well I think you need a search warrant to extract the data out of it,&rdquo; says a female officer.</p><p>&ldquo;You can inventory it,&rdquo; suggests an officer.</p><p>&ldquo;Right, we&rsquo;re not pulling anything off of it. We&rsquo;re just inventorying it and we have it in our possession,&rdquo; offers another.</p><p>&ldquo;It&rsquo;s evidence in a battery.&rdquo;</p><p>An officer suggests, &ldquo;You have to put a hold on it then.&rdquo;</p><p>&ldquo;Right. Hold for investigation.&rdquo;</p><p><a href="https://youtu.be/fHTTy9D8x2w?t=38m34s" target="_blank">At one point an officer says</a>, &ldquo;I&rsquo;d suggest we take the hard drive and inventory it. Just in case... I&rsquo;d rather it be in our hands than in theirs.&rdquo;</p><p>A number of attorneys I talked to said it&rsquo;s hard to see this as anything other than an attempt to obstruct justice.</p><p>IPRA chief Scott Ando won&rsquo;t talk to us about this case, but I asked a spokesman for the agency if they investigated the officers&rsquo; seeming attempt to take the video. Spokesman Larry Merritt says this was mediated discipline, which he says means there was no investigation of any sort. I asked him if IPRA interviewed a single officer about the attempt to get rid of the video. Merritt just repeated that this was mediated discipline and therefore there was no investigation.</p><p>We tried to reach out to the officers through the Fraternal Order of Police, which provides legal representation, but the FOP would not provide any information for the officers or the attorneys who represented them.</p><p><strong>&ldquo;Doesn&rsquo;t take a rocket scientist&rdquo;</strong></p><p>&ldquo;It doesn&rsquo;t take a rocket scientist to figure out what&rsquo;s going on there. There was some behaviour in there that the police did not want anyone to see,&rdquo; said Tom Needham in a recent interview at his office across the street from the federal court building.</p><p>Needham is the attorney who first got this video when he was hired by the woman who owned the tanning salon. But he&rsquo;s also represented cops accused of misconduct and he spent three years in the police department as general counsel and later was chief of staff to then-Superintendent Terry Hillard. He speaks of cops with great respect and empathy.</p><p>Needham says the video was being recorded at a remote location--and that&rsquo;s why the officers couldn&rsquo;t get it. He says it&rsquo;s not like the 80s when things were recorded on VHS tapes.&ldquo;It was a kind of a clumsy, ham-handed, and ultimately failed attempt to hide evidence of what happened in that store,&rdquo; he said.</p><p><strong>&ldquo;Complete failure of leadership&rdquo;</strong></p><p>I asked Needham how the public should feel about the fact that the agency responsible for investigating serious police misconduct in Chicago had this evidence of potential attempted obstruction of justice handed to them on a platter and didn&rsquo;t pursue it.</p><p>&ldquo;In my opinion there&rsquo;s a problem with the leadership at this agency,&rdquo; said Needham. &ldquo;For this kind of evidence to be given to the Independent Police Review Authority and for them to do this, you know, it looks like a half-assed investigation. I&rsquo;m sorry but that&rsquo;s all it is. It&rsquo;s, just, I don&rsquo;t understand it. There&rsquo;s some really basic questions that could be asked from the police officers and it wouldn&rsquo;t take that long and the fact that they didn&rsquo;t do it is mind-boggling to me. It&rsquo;s a complete failure of leadership.&rdquo;</p><p>Needham says when the system fails like it has in this case, the unintended victims are the police officers who risk their lives and do good work. Needham says IPRA chief Scott Ando needs to explain to the public exactly how his office investigated what happened in the salon that day.</p><p><em>Robert Wildeboer is a WBEZ criminal and legal affairs reporter. Follow him at&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/robertwildeboer">@robertwildeboer</a>.</em></p></p> Mon, 21 Sep 2015 17:11:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/ipra-fails-pursue-potential-crime-cops-caught-video-113018 The Michael Brown Law: Chicago's reception to cops wearing body cameras http://www.wbez.org/michael-brown-law-chicagos-reception-cops-wearing-body-cameras-111173 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/police_body_cameras.jpg" alt="" /><p><p dir="ltr">The relationship between Chicago police and many residents has been tense and complicated for years. And for some, the events in Ferguson over the last few months have highlighted the tensions. Nineteen-year-old Shea was with other protesters outside Chicago Police Headquarters Monday night, waiting to hear the grand jury&rsquo;s decision. She said she doesn&rsquo;t trust the police, and feels like minorities in Chicago have targets on their backs.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;They put so much fear into people that we can&rsquo;t even trust them to even call them and say, &lsquo;Hey, someone&rsquo;s in my house, stealing something.&rsquo; We can&rsquo;t even trust them to do that,&rdquo; Shea told WBEZ.</p><p dir="ltr">Police are aware of the mistrust&nbsp;<span style="color: rgb(84, 84, 84); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: small; line-height: 16.5454540252686px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&mdash;&nbsp;</span>they feel it too. When Supt. Garry McCarthy first came to Chicago, he offered WBEZ some historical context. McCarthy said historically, police have been a de facto symbol of racist policies in this country.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;Slavery was written into the Constitution, segregation, Jim Crow, you name it. The point is it was the police departments who enforced those laws. That builds natural distrust and a narrative in that community that before we even step on the block, there&rsquo;s a natural distrust,&rdquo; McCarthy explained back in 2012.</p><p dir="ltr">Attitudes like Shea&rsquo;s are omnipresent&nbsp;<span style="color: rgb(84, 84, 84); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: small; line-height: 16.5454540252686px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&mdash;&nbsp;</span>and that&rsquo;s why many Chicagoans are in favor of body cameras for police.</p><p dir="ltr">For a long time, residents had no way to legally document what the mistrust between citizens and police officers looked and sounded like. Illinois had a strict law against recording conversations without all parties&rsquo; consent. But that law was struck down by the Illinois Supreme Court earlier this year--and now, there&rsquo;s an opportunity to write legislation that includes police body cameras.</p><p dir="ltr">Dean Angelo represents more than 10,000 Chicago police officers as president of the local Fraternal Order of Police lodge. Angelo said many of his officers aren&rsquo;t ready to buy into police cameras. After all, Angelo said, the work of police officers makes them suspicious by nature. He was one of several local law enforcement officers who gave testimony before a joint Illinois judiciary committee hearing.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;Our members sit in two camps: One is no. And the other one is, it&rsquo;s coming anyway,&rdquo; Angelo said.</p><p dir="ltr">But cops do like the idea of having an official video of record--instead of unofficial cell phone videos that can be manipulated.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;I imagine that the people that are the proponents of the gotcha type of mentality with this environment of using body cameras are going to be extremely surprised what an officer confronts on each and every day of their watch,&rdquo; said Angelo.</p><p dir="ltr">Angelo added that &ldquo;a certain segment of the population&rdquo; has no respect for Chicago police officers. The benefit of these body cameras, he said, is revealing officers&rsquo; daily reality.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;Eyes will be opened and you&rsquo;ll see what heroes you have on the streets every day. How tolerant they are, how professional they are and how good they are at their jobs,&rdquo; Angelo explained.</p><p dir="ltr">But Sean Smoot with the Illinois Police Benevolent and Protective Association worries that cameras won&rsquo;t capture the complete picture, or the whole experience of the street officer.</p><p dir="ltr">The cameras are about the size of a pager. They&rsquo;re usually worn on an officer&rsquo;s chest. They don&rsquo;t offer a 360-degree view--and there&rsquo;s no real depth perception.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;We know from officers who are involved in critical incidents and frankly anyone who has a gun pointed at them, their eye, their brain immediately focuses on the barrel of the gun and what&rsquo;s happening on the sides or in the periphery, the brain doesn&rsquo;t process where a camera might,&rdquo; Smoot said.</p><p dir="ltr">And, Smoot added, a camera can&rsquo;t know when a witness or victim is feeling uncomfortable or overexposed.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t think any of us want to see a YouTube video released of a police officer interviewing a rape victim for instance,&rdquo; Smoot said.</p><p dir="ltr">Local law enforcement agencies want officers to decide when cameras should be rolling. But with a history of mistrust and misconduct, that&rsquo;s likely a tough sell in Chicago.</p><p dir="ltr">State Rep. Elgie Sims raised questions about the merits of body cameras at the recent judiciary committee hearing. Sims represents Illinois&rsquo; 34th district, which covers the South and Southeast sides of Chicago and some surrounding suburbs. He said the district has some great police in the area--but there are also some bad actors.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;I&rsquo;ve had my own personal experiences with police officers where I know that if there were body cameras in play, the conversation and the interaction would&rsquo;ve been a lot different,&rdquo; Sims shared.</p><p dir="ltr">Sims said it&rsquo;s very difficult to have to explain those interactions to your children. He believes body cameras have the ability to curb bad behavior on both sides: Because there are folks, Sims said, who will make false accusations against officers. But he still wouldn&rsquo;t want to give one actor the ability to control the story.</p><p dir="ltr">&ldquo;If you have the ability to turn the camera on when it&rsquo;s the most appropriate for you, it puts a different spin on the story,&rdquo; Sims explained.</p><p dir="ltr">Instead, show the whole story, start to finish, he said, and lay out exceptions to the rules--like when it would be unsafe for the officer, a witness or a victim.</p><p dir="ltr">There are other concerns being raised by law enforcement and lawmakers. Questions about privacy protections and data storage. And, of course, the cost.</p><p dir="ltr">The cameras are between $800 and $1,200 each&nbsp;<span style="color: rgb(84, 84, 84); font-family: arial, sans-serif; font-size: small; line-height: 16.5454540252686px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255);">&mdash;&nbsp;</span>but it&rsquo;s storing what the lens captures that&rsquo;s most costly. The New Orleans Police Department, for example, estimates it will pay $2 million per year to outfit 900 officers with cameras, and most of that goes to data storage.</p><p dir="ltr">When Illinois lawmakers discussed the issue, they&rsquo;d intended to bring up body cameras during the fall veto session. But as the political landscape has gotten more complicated, House Committee Chair Rep. Elaine Nekritz said she&rsquo;d be surprised if it came up in the veto session at all.&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr"><em>Katie O&rsquo;Brien is a WBEZ reporter. Follow her<a href="http://twitter.com/katieobez" target="_blank"> @katieobez</a>.</em></p></p> Mon, 01 Dec 2014 17:17:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/michael-brown-law-chicagos-reception-cops-wearing-body-cameras-111173 Chicago Crime Commission calls for 1,400 more cops http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-crime-commission-calls-1400-more-cops-102671 <p><p>There are many ideas swirling from aldermen, religious leaders and community groups about how to address gang violence. The Chicago Crime Commission joined the conversation Tuesday with their own recommendations, which quickly garnered the support of the Fraternal Order of Police.</p><p>The commission&#39;s plan is twofold: First, they want the city to hire 1400 more police officers immediately. According to members, their calculations came from comparing the number of sworn officers working in patrol operations with the number of established beats and norms for police patrol manpower across the country.&nbsp;</p><p>Second, they said the&nbsp;US District Attorney and the Cook County State&rsquo;s Attorney should help train Chicago police to prosecute armed gang members under federal laws.&nbsp;</p><p>Commission board member Peter Bensinger says they want gang members locked up in federal prisons.<br /><br />&quot;It&rsquo;s a different story. It&rsquo;s different time, harder time, further away from their cohorts and their gangs,&quot; Bensinger said.&nbsp;<br /><br />As for how to fund this plan, Bensinger and other members say that&#39;s not their job. &nbsp;</p><p>&quot;The Crime Commission here is not going to respond to &#39;how do you address the payroll or the budget problems for these additional policemen&#39;. That&#39;s up to the mayor, the city council and our greater community. And we wouldn&#39;t be doing our job if we had to comment on how many police officers can you afford,&quot; Bensiger said.&nbsp;</p><p>Pat Camden, spokesman for the Fraternal Order of Police, said he thinks Chicagoans would be willing to foot the bill for the commission&#39;s plan.&nbsp;<br /><br />&quot;It becomes an issue that &lsquo;we&rsquo;re not going to raise property taxes, we&rsquo;re not going to do this.&rsquo; By not raising property taxes, put us in this situation to begin with,&quot; Camden said.&nbsp;<br /><br />Camden said he supports the Crime Commission&rsquo;s recommendation wholeheartedly.<br /><br />&nbsp;</p></p> Wed, 26 Sep 2012 05:28:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/chicago-crime-commission-calls-1400-more-cops-102671 Top cop: Chicago won’t redraw beat maps anytime soon http://www.wbez.org/story/beat-realignment/top-cop-chicago-won%E2%80%99t-redraw-beat-maps-anytime-soon <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//Jody_Weis_by_Getty.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Chicago may not have enough cops in its highest-crime neighborhoods, but police Supt. Jody Weis says the city won&rsquo;t redraw patrol maps anytime soon.<br /><br />Realigning the city&rsquo;s 285 beats would shift officers and cars to where they&rsquo;re needed most, an idea popular with some aldermen on the city&rsquo;s South and West sides. Weis himself had been talking it up for two years.<br /><br />But aldermen in low-crime areas voiced fears that they would lose protection. And the Fraternal Order of Police said its contract constrained where the city could assign officers.<br /><br />Now Weis is talking about a different approach. At a Chicago Police Board meeting last Thursday, the superintendent said the city would not redraw beat maps, at least for now. &ldquo;We certainly don&rsquo;t intend to do that until the wards have been redrawn,&rdquo; Weis said, according to the meeting <a href="http://www.wbez.org/sites/default/files/Chicago_Police_Board_public_meeting_20110217.pdf">transcript</a>.<br /><br />What do political boundaries have to do with policing? WBEZ on Tuesday asked Weis spokeswoman Lt. Maureen Biggane, but she didn&rsquo;t answer.<br /><br />The police department, meanwhile, is sticking close to the status quo. In a written statement, Biggane said that includes sending mobile units to high-crime areas &mdash; an approach she calls less costly than realigning the beats.<br /><br />&ldquo;None of these methods entail realigning districts or beats,&rdquo; Biggane wrote. &ldquo;However, the process is continual and fluid. Additional data, including recent Census Bureau figures, will be taken into account as the process moves forward.&rdquo;</p></p> Tue, 22 Feb 2011 21:36:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/beat-realignment/top-cop-chicago-won%E2%80%99t-redraw-beat-maps-anytime-soon Moseley Braun wants new police superintendent http://www.wbez.org/story/carol-moseley-braun/moseley-braun-wants-new-police-superintendent <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//IMG_6661.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>Carol Moseley Braun said if she's elected mayor, she would hire a new superintendent of the Chicago Police Department. The former U.S. Senator said the current superintendent, Jody Weis, isn't a good fit for the job.</p><p>&quot;I think the fact that the superintendent, again, is not from here, doesn't understand this city, having to learn it - get a guidebook out,&quot; she said. &quot;You need to get somebody who knows Chicago to run the Chicago Police Department.&quot;</p><p>Weis came from Philadelphia to become the top cop in 2008 after a series of scandals involving police officers. The police union has held marches against Weis protesting his leadership.</p><p>Moseley Braun said a current rank-and-file officer would be better suited to run the department.</p></p> Thu, 30 Dec 2010 11:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/carol-moseley-braun/moseley-braun-wants-new-police-superintendent Union president blasts Weis http://www.wbez.org/story/abuse/union-president-blasts-weis <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//story/photo/2010-October/2010-10-20/donahue.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><em>Updated At: 5:30 on 10/20/2010</em></p><p>The president of the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police Wednesday lashed out at Police Superintendent Jody Weis for his handling of an alleged case of police brutality.<br /><br />Mark Donahue is the police union's president. He said Weis' Friday night press conference was held in haste and that Weis didn't conduct a proper investigation.<br /><br />Two of seven officers stripped of police powers have now been reinstated. Donahue said GPS records prove they weren't present when a suspect was allegedly beaten. <br /><br />&quot;At least two officers, and potentially all seven department members, have had their careers damaged by the superintendent's lapse of sound judgement,&quot; Donahue said. &quot;He didn't even have the common decency to apologize to, or even recognize, that these two officers have been cleared in his latest television appearance just this morning.&quot;</p><p>The names of the officers have not been released publicly. But Donahue said their reputations have been damaged within the department.<br /><br />He also said the Fraternal Order of Police is considering legal action &quot;against this superintendent on behalf of these two police officers whose good names and reputations have been tarnished by his incompetence.&quot;</p><p>Few details have been released about the incident in question. But on Tuesday, Mayor Richard Daley told reporters that &quot;a young person was handcuffed and several police officers watched it, and someone went over and punched him in the jaw. The superintendent immediately suspended him.&quot;</p><p>The Chicago Police Department today released a statement confirming that two officers have been cleared in the incident and that they're not part of the investigation. The department says it is &quot;committed to cooperating fully with all (Independent Police Review Authority) investigations. It is important to note that relief of powers does not consititute discipline.&quot;</p></p> Wed, 20 Oct 2010 20:54:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/abuse/union-president-blasts-weis