A four-year federal investigation aimed at reaching up the chain of command in a Chicago police misconduct scandal culminated pretty much where it began, with charges against the accused rogue cops but no new allegations against their bosses, says the Chicago Tribune. When the U.S. Attorney took over a state’s attorney’s investigation of the elite Special Operations Section in 2007, investigators said they were pursuing evidence of a coverup that may have protected officers who had been repeatedly accused of robberies and false arrests.
The probe of one of the department’s worst misconduct scandals dragged on for more than four years, and when federal civil rights charges and plea deals against the reputed ringleaders were announced yesterday, there were no new allegations of wrongdoing against the officials who had supervised former officer Jerome Finnigan’s team, which was disbanded in 2007. Sources cautioned that the investigation could still yield more charges, but the federal charges against Finnigan and Keith Herrera — and new misdemeanor counts against two additional officers who had minor roles in the allegations — signal that the major thrust of the case appears to be winding down. The U.S. attorney’s office said all four officers intend to plead guilty.