Friday, June 12, 2009

Judge said what???

"Does an off-duty police officer have the same authority as an officer on duty?"

This question was asked of Judge McIntyre by jurors in the criminal trial of Brian Quilici.

According to this morning's article in the Northwest Herald, "Prather answered, 'A police officer executing an arrest outside of his jurisdiction has no greater arrest powers than a private citizen executing a citizens' arrest.' "

An Illinois appeals court didn't agree and, again according to the Northwest Herald, reportedly believed that the judge's answer "confused the jury and that, in fact, because Quilici was an officer in the same county as the town where the incident occurred, he did have arrest authority."

My interest in arrests outside an officer's jurisdiction of authority was attracted after a Lakemoor officer made a traffic stop in the City of McHenry a couple of years ago. I learned that Illinois state law does allow a peace officer to make such an arrest anywhere in the State of Illinois. At the time I read that law and today I don't recall whether it was a broad or limited power.

So, does any officer of a town really have authority outside the town limits; i.e., in the county in which the town is located? Or even outside that county and throughout the state? And for what types of arrests? Crimes against persons? extreme traffic violations? minor traffic violations? parking?

Also, sometime back someone told me that Illinois does not allow "citizen's arrests". Some states in the wild, wild West do.

But what if Judge Prather is correct and the Appeals Court has erred? Will McHenry County prosecutors appeal to a higher court? Or will they seek a new trial here?

Just in case you missed the quote of Quilici's attorney, Vincent Solano, "And the reality is that if Fox Lake had done what it should have done in the first place, Ryan Hallett would have gone to prison and Brian Quilici would have received medals of honor."

What, for kicking a person in the eye and causing massive permanent injury?

Police officers are allowed to use such force as is necessary. Is there anyone, anywhere, who thinks that degree of force was necessary? I guess not, since a civil award of $450,000 to Hallett hit the papers earlier this week.


Anonymous said...

This whole situation was mishandled from the very beginning. Hallett should have been arrested and put in the greybar hotel for his criminal act. Quilici should not have placekicked Hallett's head. I the other cops... well, I dunno. I think alcohol played a role in it for sure. You dont go to KC's to not be served "something". I once got a speeding ticket from Pilati and I gave him lip. He was firm with me but didnt get hostile. The next day I called and apologized to him and he was very gracious. He also did not show up for court so I could get out of the ticket. He didnt seem like a bad officer. But with all the slanted tactics by both sides, who knows. The cops all got fired, one in jail (out on appeal?) and monitarily, Hallett now has enough dough to drink himself silly the rest of his life.
Enough again... all should get over it and move on.

Gus said...

Nice comment about Pilati. Thanks for your honest reference to your traffic stop. He was a gentleman, you were a gentleman to call the next day. It all worked out just right.

Karen30036 said...

I was told by an Island Lake cop he can give a ticket anywhere he wants in the state.
I asked because he was hiding on a Nunda township road in unincorporated McHenry County handing out tickets to people "rolling the stop sign". Yes, Village of Island Lake is across the street, but he wasn't hiding in the Village, or on a Village street. In that area, there are no good places to hide and he needed the cover of overgrown weeds and bushes to stop these criminals rolling the stop sign. You can only go left or right at this particular sign.

Re: Hallett. Is this a growing trend these days for cops to be rude, obnoxious, agressive and bullies, or is it reported more because of camcorders, cell phone cameras and fed up citizens?

Gus said...

Good questions, Karen. The answers are yes, and yes.