Two Chicago police officers are facing possible termination after nearly seven years following an investigation into a parking garage fight involving the two cops was said to have been started after they allegedly used a racial slur. The two men had been on desk duty in the interim.
Not much has been public about the confrontation between officers Marc Jarocki, Michael Kelly and a third sergeant Patrick Gilmore and Joseph Baskins in the parking garage in the 100 block of West Madison Street on Oct. 30, 2014, the Chicago Tribune reported.
Baskins was in the parking facility with friends and loved ones when they ran into the trio. Court documents say Baskins and his fiancé were in the area because they were planning on getting married at City Hall.
In a 2014 interview, a friend of Baskins told reporters at the time, the group, which included a friend and their minor child, took a break to smoke outside after a judge announced an intermission in marriage procedures.
When they got back on the elevator, the three officers, who were allegedly drinking at a nearby bar, had already boarded. One of the officers reportedly told Baskins “you are on the wrong elevator,” and referred to him and his group by using the N-word, and made other racist remarks.
Baskins asked the officer what he said, and one of the other officers responded, “You heard what he said,” the suit alleged. Baskins also accused Gilmore of punching him in the mouth before the two engaged in an all-out brawl.
He claimed the officer pulled out a gun; Baskins’ friend managed to kick it away from Gilmore. Baskins then grabbed the gun, and he and the rest of his group fled. The man was eventually arrested for possessing the firearm on an illegal gun charge, but the charge was later dropped.
He sued the three officers and the city of Chicago in 2017 following allegations that the officers falsely claimed they smelled marijuana when they met the group and were trying to arrest Baskins because they believed he was in possession. The case was ultimately settled two years later for $450,000.
Officers Jarocki and Kelly are now facing several allegations, including failing to come to the aid of a third officer involved in the fight. As a result, that officer was severely beaten and had his firearm stolen from him. He has since left the department.
Furthermore, they are accused of failing to swiftly call 911 or anyone from the police department to notify them of the incident, according to disciplinary charges filed with the Chicago Police Board.
The pair had since been placed on paid desk duty and had their police powers stripped as they no longer could carry a badge or gun for work purposes.
The officers could be placed on unpaid leave of absence with the recent disciplinary charges until a police board process is completed. The board will then decide whether the officers will be terminated following a series of trials.