Former Harvey cop gets $600,000 in federal lawsuit
BY KIM JANSSEN Federal Courts Reporter email@example.com January 24, 2013 4:25PM
Updated: January 24, 2013 6:35PM
A Harvey cop who was forced to patrol in an unsafe squad car without his K-9 partner as revenge for his political opposition to Mayor Eric Kellogg was awarded $600,000 in damages Thursday by a federal jury.
Former police officer Alex Gbur was shot at by a gang member on the night of Sept. 26, 2006, but couldn’t call for help because the decrepit squad car he was assigned had a broken radio. Just hours later, Metra police officer Thomas Cook was killed in the high-crime south suburb — allegedly by the same gunman.
An emotional Gbur testified at trial he was ordered to work without his police dog, and to take the “deathtrap” squad car, in retaliation for backing the mayoral campaign of Kellogg rival Marion Beck, and for giving evidence to a Department of Justice probe of racism within the Harvey Police Department.
A jury took less than four hours to reject Kellogg and the City of Harvey’s denials, awarding Gbur $500,000 in compensatory damages and ordering Kellogg to pay an additional $75,000 in punitive damages. Former Police Chief Andrew Joshua was ordered to pay $25,000 in punitive damages.