Two Chicago Cops Accused of Disgraceful Act; One Seeks Re-Appointment
In a shameful act of racial discrimination, the Chicago Sun Times posted on Wednesday a photograph depicting two white former Chicago police officers standing over a black man wearing deer antlers. The officers have posed with rifles as if they were hunters and the black drug suspect wearing antlers was their prey.
The photo is believed to have been taken sometime between 1999 and 2003 in a West Side police station. It was reported that the photo was discovered by the FBI during an investigation into police wrongdoings and was handed over to the city in 2013.
The two officers have been identified as Timothy McDermott and Jerome Finnigan. After an investigation, a police board had voted 5-4 to fire Timothy McDermott. The majority opinion stated, "Appearing to treat an African- American man not as a human being but as a hunted animal is disgraceful and shocks the conscience". The more appalling fact is that McDermott is now seeking his job back.
The second accused, Jerome Finnigan, was convicted in 2011 and was already serving a 12-year sentence for corruption before the investigation culminated. He has been charged for heading a crew of corrupt cops who were involved in robberies and home invasions and also for participating in murder-for-hire scheme.
The lawyers of both McDermott and the police department had tried to keep the photo hidden from the public but Judge Thomas Allen denied their request in a ruling issued this March.
McDermott had stated in an interview that he was asked to join the photo and that he did so without exercising proper judgment. McDermott added that by participating in the photo, he had made a mistake as a young, impressionable police officer who was trying to fit in.
Rahm Emanuel, the Mayor of Chicago, has opposed re-appointment of McDermott to his job, asserting that the photo disgraces the police department's values.