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Police sergeant gets 18 months’ probation for hitting suspect

Updated: November 9, 2012 1:56PM

A Chicago Police sergeant was sentenced to 18 months’ probation for hitting a handcuffed suspect outside a South Side restaurant.

Edward Howard Jr., 48, was convicted of striking a handcuffed 19-year-old man across the face three times with an open hand in the parking lot of a fast-food restaurant in October 2010. He faced up to five years in prison on charges of aggravated battery and official misconduct.

The 19-year-old and his two friends had been arrested for criminal trespassing after walking out of the restaurant and then complied with police orders and walked to the police car and placed his hands on the vehicle, prosecutors said.

After the man was handcuffed behind his back, Howard struck him, the last time hard enough to knock the man off-balance.

At trial, Howard, a 25-year veteran cop, admitted striking the man, but said the man was using profanity and was going to spit on him. Howard was stripped of his police powers following his arrest.

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