Home Germany Chicago police union boss retires instead of being fired for misconduct and launches bid for MAYOR #englishheadline #Chicago #police #union #boss #retires #fired #misconduct #launches #bid #MAYOR

Chicago police union boss retires instead of being fired for misconduct and launches bid for MAYOR #englishheadline #Chicago #police #union #boss #retires #fired #misconduct #launches #bid #MAYOR

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The Chicago police union boss announced his retirement from the force – and bid to run for mayor – on Tuesday, a day after his first disciplinary hearing for controversial social media posts and other actions that allegedly discredited the department. 

John Catanzara, who was an officer for 27 years, officially submitted his paperwork to retire from the police department early Tuesday morning, cutting his discipline hearing short to avoid being disciplined or fired.

The head of Chicago’s largest police union faced charges of violating 11 CPD rules in connection to 18 allegations involving controversial posts on social media made to his personal Facebook page before he became police union president. He intends to remain in his post as union boss.

In the social media posts, he compared the city’s employee vaccine mandate to Nazi Germany, called Muslims ‘savages (who) deserve a bullet,’ and appeared in police uniform to promote former President Donald Trump

Catanzara said he believed he would not get a fair hearing and that he would almost certainly be fired – as recommended by Police Superintendent David Brown – and he did not want to give Mayor Lori Lightfoot that satisfaction. 

John Catanzara submitted paperwork to retire from the Chicago Police Department on Tuesday morning and announced his bid to run for mayor against Lori Lightfoot

Catanzara serves as the head of Chicago's largest police union and plans to stay in his elected position as he collects his pension

Catanzara serves as the head of Chicago’s largest police union and plans to stay in his elected position as he collects his pension 

He announced his plan to retire Monday after the first day of his disciplinary hearing. He did not believe that he would receive a fair trial and wanted to retire before being punished or fired

He announced his plan to retire Monday after the first day of his disciplinary hearing. He did not believe that he would receive a fair trial and wanted to retire before being punished or fired

Catanzara has publicly clashed with Mayor Lori Lightfoot (pictured), who said that the evidence against the retiring officer was 'overwhelming'

Catanzara has publicly clashed with Mayor Lori Lightfoot (pictured), who said that the evidence against the retiring officer was ‘overwhelming’

‘It was pretty evident very early on that this cake was already baked,’ Catanzara said on Monday, ‘I am going to be at HR first thing in the morning, and I am going to be retiring. I will no longer be a Chicago police officer. … No one will be able to touch me, not you, not this police board.’ 

The former officer said he would remain president of the Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) Lodge 7 and that he plans to run for mayor against Lori Lightfoot, with whom he has engaged in a bitter war of words over a host of issues. 

‘I will have my vindication when I tell her to get the hell out of my office and give me the keys in 2023,’ he told the Chicago Sun-Times. 

Catanzara and Lightfoot publicly clashed with tensions rising over the mayor’s COVID vaccine mandate for city workers, including police officers. 

He encouraged the roughly 17,000 members of his police fraternity to ‘hold the line’ and refuse to report their vaccination status. 

‘We’re in America, goddamn it,’ he said in response the Lightfoot’s vaccine mandate for city employees. ‘We don’t want to be forced to do anything. Period. This ain’t Nazi f****** Germany [where they say], “Step into the f****** showers. The pills won’t hurt you.“ What the f**k?’

Catanzara can remain in his elected position, to which he was elected a three-year term in 2020, as a retired officer collecting his pension. His attorney, Tim Grace, said a felony conviction could jeopardize his pension, but that he can collect it by retiring and he could even collect his pension if the disciplinary process had continued and resulted in Catanzara’s firing.

The case will be closed due to his retirement.  

He faced harsh criticism earlier this year for initially downplaying the violence during the January 6 riot at the U.S Capitol and more recently comparing the city’s employee vaccine mandate to Nazi Germany.

Catanzara apologized after making those statements, saying he expressed sympathy for those who stormed the Capitol before he knew the extent of the damage. He also apologized for the Nazi reference and said that he was not trying to compare ‘forced vaccinations to the atrocities of the Holocaust.’

Before he was elected FOP president last year, he was stripped of his police powers after he filed a report against former Chicago Police Superintendent. Eddie Johnson.

Catanzara was in the midst of a disciplinary hearing for violating department rules and several offensive social media posts he made before being elected but during his time as an officer

Catanzara was in the midst of a disciplinary hearing for violating department rules and several offensive social media posts he made before being elected but during his time as an officer

More recently, Superintendent David Brown filed charges against Catanzara for a series of statements on social media and other actions. 

According to the charging document filed with the city’s police board, Catanzara posted a number of offensive and profane statements, expressing support of killing people and referring to Muslims as ‘savages (who) all deserve a bullet.’

The documents also alleged that Catanzara, a vocal supporter of Trump, violated department policy by expressing his political views while on duty – something he did in 2017 in full uniform. His support caught the attention of Trump, who tweeted his congratulations when Catanzara was elected president of the union. 

Lightfoot released a statement following Catanza’s announcement Tuesday morning, saying that his retirement is ‘not a surprise’ as the ‘the evidence of his guilt was overwhelming.’ 

‘We cannot move beyond the very difficult circumstances that we have all endured these last 20 months unless we reject hate in all its forms, and stand united around our common values as a city that is always stronger when we work together as neighbors,’ the statement read.  



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#Chicago #police #union #boss #retires #fired #misconduct #launches #bid #MAYOR

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