The Watch

News and Information for Chicago FOP members.

Filtering by Category: Robert Rialmo

COPA Cover-up?

Attorneys for the FOP alleged Monday that the city’s police oversight agency, COPA, deliberately hid the opinion of their own expert exonerating a police officer for a fatal police shooting.  

FOP attorneys for Robert Rialmo—who is faced with losing his job after COPA ruled that his shooting of Quintonio LeGrier and an innocent bystander, Bettie Jones, was not justified—argued that a use-of-force expert hired by a law firm working for COPA stated in an email that the expert believed the shooting was justified. 

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Chicago Media and PTSD in the Police

In either case, with a few exceptions, there is a war on the Chicago Police by the Chicago media. Media punks like Hinkel are now the norm, and they are the primary source for the mental anguish, post-traumatic stress, and rampant depression in the police department. They are also a major reason for the city’s chronic violent crime and the low resolution rate for murders. There is blood on their hands.

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FOP Attorneys Attack Charges Against Officer In Opening Statement

How is it that an officer can win a departmental commendation as well as the praise of all his supervisors and co-workers for his actions in a shooting, then be stripped and potentially fired for the same event?  How can this officer be awarded the medal of valor from another incident, then have that very same incident brought up in an investigation against him?

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Bartlett to Lightfoot: Let's See All The Evidence

The Co-Chair of the FOP Legal Defense Committee has sent a letter to the head of the Chicago Police Board demanding a full release of all documents by the city’s police civilian oversight agency regarding an investigation of a 2015 fatal police shooting.

FOP Field Rep Robert Bartlett sent a letter to the president of the Chicago Police Board, Lori Lightfoot, demanding that all records and findings related to a police shooting involving Officer Robert Rialmo be included in a board member’s decision on whether the shooting was justified.

Officer Rialmo, responding to a domestic disturbance call, shot Quintonio LeGrier and a bystander, Bettie Jones, as LeGrier wielded a bat and charged at Rialmo. COPA ruled the shooting unjustified, but CPD Superintendent Johnson rejected the finding, saying it was justified. The FOP has denounced the ruling by COPA.

Now the matter is before a member of the Chicago Police Board.

After COPA made the controversial ruling, FOP attorney Tim Grace discovered through a Freedom of Information request that COPA had kept third parties that had been hired by the agency in the course of their investigation hidden. The presence and findings of these third parties were not included in COPA's report, nor were they revealed to prosecutors or to the Superintendent.

“The failure of COPA to make known these outside parties and their conclusions is an egregious violation of Officer Rialmo’s rights and calls into question the legitimacy of the investigation against him,” Barlett wrote in the letter. “The Chicago Police Board member now reviewing the case is obligated to take into consideration any findings of these parties and make them public. A failure to do so would only magnify what we believe is a sinister investigation that has taken shape against Officer Rialmo.”

A decision is expected as early as tomorrow, April 19, at the Chicago Police Board meeting. 

What Transparency?

Based on a Freedom of Information Request by attorneys working for the Fraternal Order of Police, the Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) revealed that the agency had employed an outside law firm as part the agency’s investigation of a 2015 fatal police shooting.

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