Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Woodstock: no further action against Amati

It takes the Chicago Tribune to find out what's going on the the City's interest in Sgt. Chip Amati's text to a 12-year-old girl for some "sexy pictures". Late this afternoon the Chicago Tribune reported that Woodstock doesn't plan any further action.

Apparently, the City issued a press release, which was quoted in the Tribune: "'Based on the facts of the case, the research, the policies in place and the extensive discussions, it was determined that no further disciplinary action is legally possible, and no further consideration of the issue will be undertaken by the city council or city staff,' the news release says."

Was the City Council action in December (the gnashing of teeth and teary eyes and the professed outrage) intended as a salve to get the residents to go away?

When this mess first surfaced, Chief Lowen would have informed City Manager Stelford. Then Stelford would have informed the Mayor. Maybe the rest of the City Council was informed. Did Chief Lowen decide, on his own, to ask only for a 30-day unpaid suspension?

Or did the City, even then, begin to calculate what it would cost, if it drew a line in the sand and decided to sack Amati?

Why am I suspicious? Because the Chicago Tribune reporter started nosing around well before the Board of Fire and Police Commissioners (BOFPC) met on October 28. Then the reporter re-contacted the City in mid-November. And it wasn't until the day before Thanksgiving that the news hit the fan.

Why didn't the City of Woodstock have the backbone to stand up on October 29 and inform residents of the decision of the BOFPC?

Why didn't the State's Attorney Office accept the felony charges taken to them by the Illinois State Police? This paragraph from today's article ought to really anger law-abiding residents of McHenry County:

"McHenry County Assistant State's Attorney Michael Combs has described Amati’s behavior as a 'mistake' and said prosecutors weighed the fact that Amati would face departmental discipline before deciding not to charge him with anything related to conduct uncovered by the investigation."

Yeah, it was a mistake. It was a felony! A serious breach at the Woodstock Police Dept. And Chief Lowen didn't even remove Amati from his LEADS duties until the public got wind of it and began to complain.

There are going to be a lot of residents angry over the failure of the City Council to man up in this case? It's too bad that there is no local election this spring. There would be some new faces on the Council.


richard duckworth said...

I am sure everyone who was at "that" meeting got to see politics at its finest.
All the fake tears etc... so predictable...

Big Daddy said...

Gus,what was this guy convicted of again?

Gus said...

He wasn't convicted (in court) of anything. The State's Attorney wouldn't accept the ISP felony charge for the illegal use of LEADS.

One resident addressed the Woodstock City Council about the possibility of "grooming", in view of gifts, including a necklace, to a 12-year-old girl and asking her to send him "sexy pictures".

Maverick50 said...

If the State's Attorney won't press felony charge for the illegal use of LEADS Why do we need a State's Attorney that won't do his job? Is he and the sheriff working from the same crook book? What can WE THE PEOPLE do to press charges against these moronic politicians that hold a position and do not do their job? Is there legal action one can take?