FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 13, 2021
COPA CONCLUDES INVESTIGATION INTO INCIDENT INVOLVING EXCESSIVE FORCE
The Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) has concluded its investigation into an incident involving an officer’s use of excessive force that occurred on May 31, 2019 in the 8900 block of South Commercial Avenue. COPA’s findings and recommendations, as stated in its ordinance (http://www.chicagocopa.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/COPA-Ordinance.pdf), have been forwarded to the Department and are currently pending review.
The incident began when two officers on patrol observed an individual standing in the middle of the road, impeding traffic. As one of the officers handcuffed the individual and escorted him to the police vehicle, a struggle ensued which culminated in the officer choking the arrestee while handcuffed in the back seat of the police vehicle. Although a civilian complaint was never filed with COPA, on August 8, 2019, COPA was notified by the Chicago Police Department following a review of this incident by the Force Review Unit seeking an investigation of allegations of excessive force and failure to report misconduct.
Upon receiving notification, COPA took prompt action to request the relief of powers of the officer who choked the individual and CPD concurred. COPA also made a swift referral of this incident to the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office for criminal review, who ultimately declined to file charges. COPA then commenced a full and thorough investigation, and on December 31, 2020, 16 months after this case was opened, COPA concluded its investigation and issued a second relief of powers request for three additional officers connected to this incident.
COPA’s Summary Report of Investigation (SRI) regarding this incident will be publicly posted on COPA’s website following the Department’s review and the serving of any resulting disciplinary charges against involved officers.
MEDIA CONTACT: Ephraim Eaddy – firstname.lastname@example.org – 312-771-3718