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Weis Mulls Murder Charges In Cop's Death

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Feb 24, 2010 3:40PM

Sgt. Haymaker
As the Chicago Police Department reels from the death of 21-year department veteran, Sgt. Alan Haymaker, CPD Supt. Jody Weis is mulling murder charges for burglary suspects who he suggest should be held responsible for Haymaker's death. Haymaker died early Monday morning when he lost control of the vehicle he was driving down Lake Shore Drive and slammed into a tree. He was responding to a reported burglary at a cell phone store in the 3100 block of N. Clark Street. Weis says that he's now in talks with the Cook County state's attorney's office about possibly charging the burglars with felony murder should they be caught. Said Weis, "Under Illinois statutes it appears they could be charged with murder... that is something I think that we'll be looking at with the state's attorney's office. But I think it's something that we certainly will consider." Experts the Tribune talked to seemed skeptical about the possibility such charges would stick because it would have to be proved "the burglar should have foreseen his actions could cause the death of a police officer responding to the burglary."

Of more immediate concern is how the condition of the car Haymaker was driving contributed to the crash (and, subsequently, his death). According to a CBS 2 report [via Second City Cop]:

The vehicle that swerved off Lake Shore Drive and slammed into a tree was a "pool" car, not regularly assigned to the streets.

A high ranking CPD officer, who does not want his name used, thinks there was good reason for that. In his words, "this car was like a horse, waiting to be put out to pasture. A lot of these cars shouldn't be driven."

The car, a 2005 Chevrolet with 114,000 miles recorded, has had a series of repairs over the last year: fixed steering column, two tires replaced, left and right struts replaced, and coolant replaced. The CPD told CBS 2, "We are confident this was a safe vehicle."

Haymaker will be laid to rest on Friday.