Illinois State Representative (and Chicago Police Officer) Edward Acevedo suffered a bit of a setback recently when his lawsuit against fellow Chicago Police Officer Dennis Canterbury was soundly defeated--for the second time (at least it made it to the jury this time--the first time, the judge threw it out before Canterbury had even finished presenting his defense).
The lawsuit stems from an incident that occurred in 2001. After a fund-raiser, Acevedo's legislative assistant, Sylvia Idrovo, discovered that her car had been impounded (for reasons I have been unable to discover). Acevedo drove her to the impound lot, bringing along fellow officer Aaron del Valle. Del Valle, by the way, now has legal problems of his own, related to charges of illegal city hiring practices in which he was allegedly involved (that's odd--you mean corruption is illegal in Chicago?), in connection to his work with the Hispanic Democratic Organization (part of Mayor Daley's political machine--Acevedo also has connections to the HDO).
The "plan" (such as it was) apparently was to use the clout of the two "Only Ones" (one of whom was doubly privileged, by virtue of being both a police officer and a state representative) to bully the impound lot into releasing the car without Idrovo having to pay the fees that those of us without "Only One" backing would be charged.
Things got ugly when the impound lot supervisor failed, somehow, to be awed by Acevedo's and del Valle's presence, and refused to release the vehicle.
Acevedo did allegedly try to persuade an auto pound supervisor to release the car.Such modesty, and one would think that the supervisor would be happy to grant such a polite request. Alas, he instead called the police (er . . . the other police, I guess), bringing Officer Canterbury to the scene. Acevedo's and Canterbury's accounts of what happened next are, naturally, quite different. Whether Canterbury punched Acevedo for no reason (as claimed by Acevedo), or Acevedo charged Canterbury, who then pushed him back, causing a highly inebriated Acevedo to lose his balance (Canterbury's version of events), the end result was that Acevedo ended up with his backside on the ground.
"Who the f--- do you think you are, you no good motherf-----! Don't you know who I am?" Acevedo told the supervisor, according to police reports.
By now, it was necessary to bring in still more law enforcement, so Police Sergeant Donald Rose appeared on the scene.
Rose described Acevedo as "belligerent, loud, hostile" because he was insistent and mouthing off to Rose, who is a superior officer to Acevedo, a patrolman.Making friends all over the place, aren't you, Eddy (who is also quoted as having said to one of the officers, "You don't tell me what to do, I tell you what to do!")? Edward clearly needs to work on his professional courtesy.
"Besides smelling alcoholic beverage, I'm figuring this guy is just not being reasonable, he's not thinking, which made me think that that's another reason why this guy has been drinking, because you don't mouth off to a higher rank," Rose said.
Acevedo was charged with misdemeanor assault, although that charge was later dropped, when Canterbury did not show up for court (he claims he was never notified of the court date). Interestingly, Acevedo was never charged for drunk driving, despite having driven to the lot, and despite registering a blood alcohol level of .06% in a Breathalyzer test administered six hours after the confrontation, which would indicate that at the time of the incident, his blood alcohol level had been around .17%, or more than twice the legal limit for driving--it's good to be an "Only One," isn't it? Acevedo, by the way, denies he was intoxicated (he acknowledges drinking beer at the fund raiser, although the number of beers he admits to having consumed varies, apparently). Ah--don't you just love integrity in politics?
I can afford to be amused by all this, because I live in a part of the state far away from Chicago (thankfully). Chicago tax payers, on the other hand, will probably have more trouble seeing the humor in the situation, as the first lawsuit (and subsequent appeal) cost them more than $73,000, and the second is expected to cost "in the mid-five figures" (despite the city winning both times). By the way, Acevedo has not yet exhausted the appeals process, so the city's (and taxpayers') legal bills might not be done growing (it is not yet known whether or not he will appeal again).
So far, this story has been only quite marginally related to gun rights--but there is a connection. Making this particularly sweet is Acevedo's legislative history of outright hostility to Illinois gun owners. He, in fact, was the author last year of HB 2414, to ban so-called "assault weapons," .50 caliber rifles (and .50 caliber ammunition), and eleven round (and larger) magazines. This is how he justified his attack on the Constitution:
"The tragic events in Englewood sadly demonstrate that assault weapons have no place in our community," Acevedo said. "My heart goes out to the victims and their families. We cannot let their suffering be in vain. As a police officer, I can confirm that these are dangerous weapons, used only for acts of terrorism and violence. We must stand united against the gangs and criminals who use them to wreak havoc in our neighborhoods and terrorize children and families."Ah--the irony of a civil rights lawsuit being filed by this aspiring tyrant.