Skip to comments.Kass exclusive: Suburban officer charged in 95-year-old's death (ILLINOIS)
Posted on 04/02/2014 8:31:34 AM PDT by KeyLargo
Kass exclusive: Suburban officer charged in 95-year-old's death
Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass discusses charges filed in the death of 95-year-old John Wrana. John Kass
April 2, 2014
An officer was charged this morning in the police killing of 95-year-old John Wrana, the World War II veteran who was fatally shot with beanbag rounds in his apartment at a south suburban senior facility last year.
Cook County States Attorney Anita Alvarezs office said patrolman Craig Taylor, 43, was charged with one count of reckless conduct, a Class 4 felony. Taylor has been with the Park Forest Police Department since January, 2004.
Taylor is expected to appear before a judge later today at the Leighton Criminal Courts Building. The case is being handled by the special prosecutions unit.
Wrana, who had served with the U.S. Army Air Corps in Burma during World War II, was just weeks shy of his 96th birthday when the confrontation occurred with police at the Victory Centre assisted-living center in July 2013.
(Excerpt) Read more at chicagotribune.com ...
Girl: The only game I ever played was beanbag.
WC Fields: Beanbag? Ah, very good; it becomes very exciting at times. I saw the championship played in Paris. Many people were killed.
is that part of obamacare?
How Police Became a Standing Army
Rise of the Warrior Cop: The Militarization of America’s Police Forces, Radley Balko, PublicAffairs, 400 pages
By John Payne January 2, 2014
I don’t know. Looks more like felony murder to me.
The cop will get off with a slap on the wrist; they always do.
The charge carries probation to three years according to the article.
Probation to three years?
All they needed to do was to leave the old boy alone and everything would have worked out. At 95 years of age, if the man decided not to take his medicine he should have been left alone - period. In a case where the officer fired at the man 5 times with LTL beanbags from 5-8 feet, the officer should be charged with 2nd (or 3rd depending upon state definition) degree murder. Minimum distance with LTL beanbags is 15 feet.
Maybe Officer Craig Taylor was educating students four years ago on how to shoot senior citizens with a shotgun...
25 May 2009
School District 162 Education Trip
Officers Julius Moore and Craig Taylor escorted students from School District 162 for an overnight outdoor education trip at Northern Illinois University. They acted as both chaperones and mentors to the young students.
And all the cop is charged with is reckless conduct, sort of like forgetting to completely put out a campfire.
Oh wait. The cops said the old man brandished a cane, a knife, and a 2-foot-long metal shoehorn that they initially thought was a machete.
Maybe the old man hobbled towards them with a cane in one hand and the shoehorn in the other. And maybe he had the knife in his teeth, like a pirate.
So certainly there was no need to try to de-escalate the situation and just wait the old vet out.
Some residents there can be belligerent and the nurses tell me of a few who can hit sometimes, but all are frail and fragile, not one of sound mind nor body.
I can't imagine needing to use, let alone doing, that sort of violence to people in that condition.
How fearful and heartless. It's no wonder that type shoots dogs while doing the job they have no business doing.
I want to see this cop held to the same standard that anyone one else would be judged by.
The training works!
Don’t try this at home.
The poor, WWII 95 year-old veteran never stood a chance.
See the violent effect of a .12 ga bean bag round on a big fat cop wearing soft body armor.
Charges should be enhanced with the additional ‘Under color of Authority’. Police need to be held at a higher standard considering their training and status-—having privileges/responsibilities not afforded the ordinary citizen.
exactly! that is what my parents' doctor told us about our 90-year old father and 88-year old mother... both are pretty darn healthy... and stubborn!
The level of belligerence from cops lately is staggering. The “us” vs. “them” mentality is a plague upon most departments—especially in the cities and suburban counties.
We’re all suspects in their eyes these days.
CTS 12 Gauge Munitions
Interesting... if you or I commit a similar crime we would be overcharged with dozens of felonies, elder abuse, etc., as well as a trumped up murder one, and anything else the prosecutor could dream up, with the hope that we would accept a plea bargain to murder two or manslaughter. However, for Officer Friendly, just one charge on the lowest level felony they can come up with, that he will probably either beat, or plead down to a misdemenour. Not all animals are equal it seems.
(720 ILCS 5/12-5) (from Ch. 38, par. 12-5)
Sec. 12-5. Reckless conduct.
(a) A person commits reckless conduct when he or she, by any means lawful or unlawful, recklessly performs an act or acts that:
(1) cause bodily harm to or endanger the safety of
another person; or
(2) cause great bodily harm or permanent disability
or disfigurement to another person.
Reckless conduct under subdivision (a)(1) is a Class A misdemeanor. Reckless conduct under subdivision (a)(2) is a Class 4 felony.
(Source: P.A. 96-1551, eff. 7-1-11.)
Now... Having said all of this... I am a P.O.S.T. certified law enforcement firearms instructor and travel all over the country. I have taught at the annual training conferences for ILEETA and IALEFI, and my company has staff there every year, teaching the instructors. We do all we can to get people to think and use common sense... Common sense keeps the bad things from happening. (My dad was flush with common sense and not once in his entire law enforcement career did he have to fire his weapon. He wasn't beyond putting a good hickory shampoo on someone that had beat a child, or a woman - that help slow down the repeat business. This was pre-Miranda, BTW.) The problem is that not all instructors do this.
Many academies now days instill a "you are the hammer, they are the nail" mentality in graduates. I've watched it happen over the past 25 years or so. The only problem is that not everyone really is a nail. The "go home at the end of your shift" attitude is fine as long as the person is using common sense. When common sense disappears, you end up with innocent people dying... Not to mention the family dogs. That is a whole other issue... That seems to have become a "if you can get away with it you can get ahead in the count" game. Don't even get me started on that...
The officer was obviously undercharged, and should have been charged with manslaughter/2nd degree murder, possibly first degree murder because they deliberately "regrouped" with a Taser, the beanbag shotgun, and a drawn pistol.
Also: Why were the other officers not charged?
But the Cops went home safe to their families, and that’s what matters...
“No mention of death.
The officer was obviously undercharged, and should have been charged with manslaughter/2nd degree murder, possibly first degree murder because they deliberately “regrouped” with a Taser, the beanbag shotgun, and a drawn pistol.
Also: Why were the other officers not charged?”
Yes, you or I would have been charged with the greater offense.
(720 ILCS 5/9-3) (from Ch. 38, par. 9-3)
Sec. 9-3. Involuntary Manslaughter and Reckless Homicide.
(a) A person who unintentionally kills an individual without lawful justification commits involuntary manslaughter if his acts whether lawful or unlawful which cause the death are such as are likely to cause death or great bodily harm to some individual, and he performs them recklessly
(1) Involuntary manslaughter is a Class 3 felony.
What Is Involuntary Manslaughter in Illinois?
By Andrew Lu on March 6, 2013 7:55 AM
Involuntary manslaughter in Illinois is the least severe of the homicide charges in the state.
Unlike murder charges, involuntary manslaughter involves unintentional killings. So while a defendant usually has an intent to kill the victim in a first or second degree murder case, when it comes to involuntary manslaughter, the killing is usually an accident or the result of a reckless act.
For example, someone who fires off a gun to celebrate July Fourth may be charged with involuntary manslaughter if the shooting accidentally kills a neighbor.
How to Prove Involuntary Manslaughter?
To prove involuntary manslaughter, prosecutors generally have to show that the accused person acted recklessly. This means that the defendant disregarded substantial and unjustifiable risks that a reasonable person would have exercised, like not firing a gun in celebration in a crowded room.
Involuntary manslaughter is distinguished from murder because prosecutors do not have to show the defendant acted “knowing” that his actions would cause death or serious injury.
How Is Involuntary Manslaughter Punished?
Involuntary manslaughter is typically classified as a Class 3 felony in Illinois. Someone convicted of this charge can face up to five years in jail. In contrast, someone convicted of murder faces a possible life sentence.
However, a defendant should know that aggravating circumstances may exist which can elevate involuntary manslaughter to a Class 2 felony. Some aggravating circumstances can include whether the victim is a peace officer or if the victim is a family member of the defendant.
Some common defenses to involuntary manslaughter can include:
An accidental as opposed to a reckless act, and
Perhaps the most common defense is arguing that the killing was not reckless. A defendant can offer that he exercised reasonable care in his actions and that the death was just an unfortunate accident.
The stupid cop doing the shooting missed the vest and shot him in the ass cheek. Trained professional? Shooting skills equal to that of a gang banger.
Most likely the killer cop will claim racism, that he was charged criminally only because he is Black and his victim is White.
“Taylor, who was about seven feet from Wrana, then shot a beanbag from a shotgun at Wrana and then shot four more, causing Wrana to bend over, according to the prosecutor.
Based on the training Taylor received, the optimum firing distance for that weapon was a minimum of 15 feet, Delaney said, and Taylor also should have considered Wranas age before shooting.
Even after the missed Taser attempt, the officers still could have safely retreated from his room before resorting to violence, and the defendant himself chose to open fire on Wrana, failing to consider the full effect five beanbag rounds fired in quick succession, at close range, would have upon a 95-year-old man, Delaney said.”
BTW the cop is black and the 95 yo is white.
So here we go again—
a white cop is involved in the death of a black person—its right to the front page
A black cop is involved in the death of a white person—no coverage to be found
It’s open season on old white military veterans.
Park Forest cop acquitted in fatal beanbag shooting of WWII vet
By Jason Meisner Chicago Tribune contact the reporter
Feb 4, 2015
The judge was only halfway through his ruling Wednesday when it became clear that Park Forest police Officer Craig Taylor would not be held criminally responsible for firing beanbag rounds at a knife-wielding World War II veteran who died hours later of internal bleeding.
In describing Taylor’s actions that night in July 2013, Cook County Associate Judge Luciano Panici began using terms like “fearing for his life” and “reasonable use of force.”
But Taylor continued to listen calmly, eyes downcast at the defense table, the courtroom gallery behind him packed with uniformed cops showing their support. It wasn’t until Panici uttered the words “not guilty” that the 10-year veteran officer dropped his head and sobbed for a moment, then jumped up and hugged his wife tightly, his face buried in her shoulder.
Across the courtroom, relatives of the 95-year-old victim, John Wrana Jr., held each other in the Markham courtroom, tears in their eyes.