Friday, April 13, 2012

Not 150MPH. Just 114MPH (on Route 47)

The original information to me about the 150MPH speed of a Huntley police officer responding to a crash was not quite correct.

On Wednesday I filed a FOIA request with the Village of Huntley, and today I received its response. I was astonished by the willingness of the Village Clerk in Huntley to provide the response well within the required period of time under the Illinois Freedom of Information Act, and I appreciated the thoroughness of the reply. I compliment the Village of Huntley on its commitment to transparency, and I thank them publicly.

On January 4, 2012, Ofc. Theo Kallantzes was assigned an unmarked Dodge Charger to operate on duty. At about 3:15PM, while near Route 47 and Algonquin, he learned of an accident at Route 47 and Big Timber Road, about 4.8 miles south. He obtained permission to respond and assist. Two minutes later (actually 1 min. 59 sec.), he arrived.

As will happen, cops "talk" among themselves, and word surfaced within the Huntley Police Department of a high-speed response. A sergeant took responsibility and investigated.

How fast was Ofc. Kallantzes driving on that Wednesday afternoon?

81MPH through the intersection of Route 47 and Fourth St. (posted 35MPH)
Through a red light, without slowing or stopping, at the RR tracks just north of Main St.
87MPH through the intersection at Mill St. (posted 35MPH)
98MPH through the entrance at Diecke Park (posted 35MPH)
97MPH through the intersection with Dean St. (posted 35MPH)
106MPH through the green light at the intersection with Regency Parkway (40MPH construction zone)
114MPH through the intersection of Huntley Crossings (posted 45MPH)
98MPH through a red light at Freeman Road
Drove into oncoming traffic lane on the I-90 bridge and south of the bridge.

Had enough? What happened to Ofc. Kallantzes? He got a week off. He lost 40 hours of pay.

Did he get any tickets?

As one McHenry County resident asked me several years ago, "Can cops get tickets?"

Should the Huntley P.D. have issued some tickets to its officer? There seems to have been plenty of proof of reckless driving and reckless disregard to the public. Ex., 98MPH through a red light? Would the in-car video system have been sufficient proof in court for prosecution? Huntley PD planned to provide further training to its officer, in the hopes that there will be no repeat performance.

Next time you've got a green light, imagine a police car (or any car) running the red light and look long and hard before you enter the intersection.


M.U.G. said...

And if you get hit by the police car, and survive, you know who will be ticketed for failure to yield to an emergency vehicle. BUT the officer should be familiar with the IVC as he does not have carte blanche for his actions and neither did this officer.

Gus said...

I'm sure he was already familiar with the I.V.C., but he has been reminded of it.

He was very, very lucky that he didn't cream some cars and people. Who expects an unmarked Dodge Charger to tear through a light at 98MPH?

He was reminded, too, that he was outrunning his siren at those speeds.