CHICAGO (AP) - Chicago Police Supt. Terry Hillard wants two officers
pay with their jobs for an allegedly slow response to a woman's repeated
calls the night she was slain.
Hillard moved Tuesday to take steps to fire the officers.
Hillard said when the public dials 911 for help there's an expectation
"that help is on the way. And is this case, help was not on the way."
Authorities have said Ronyale White repeatedly called 911 the night of
May 3 to say that her husband had violated an order of protection and was
Louis Drexel, 31, has pleaded innocent to charges that he killed his
When police did arrive about 16 minutes later, the 31-year-old mother
three had been shot.
"There is no way to tell whether a more timely response would have saved
Ronyale White's life," Hillard said. "But a timely response would have at
least given her a fighting chance."
The officers have told investigators they were delayed at the station
checking their equipment and said they then broke off en route to canvass
the neighborhood to look for a suspect that fled White's house.
Hillard's recommendation that the officers be fired isn't automatic.
next goes to the city's Law Department and if there are no objections, then
it heads to the Chicago Police Board, which can either accept the
recommendation or vote for a lesser penalty.
An earlier internal affairs division recommendation was to suspend the
officers for 15 days. Their attorney said the officers had accepted that
Hillard's decision Tuesday angered the officers' lawyer and police union
officials who said Hillard and police officials are misunderstanding the
union contract and that the suspension should have been final once the
officers accepted it.
"I have two beagles who can read the contract better," said attorney
He suggested Hillard was pressured.
Both Roddy and Fraternal Order of Police president Mark Donahue said
Hillard's action violates a new provision in the police contract that
forbids him from increasing a penalty once the officers have agreed to take
White's mother, Lorraine White, said she was relieved.
"It gives me a little relief, but not closure," she said.