I just received this release and wanted to share it with you:
CHICAGO – Attorneys for 21 people falsely arrested by a police officer charged with targeting lesbian and gay motorists for wrongful DUI arrests will release police videotape showing that the officer trumped up the bogus charges. The video will be released as part of an 11 AM, Tuesday, October 6 press conference at the offices of Erickson & Oppenheimer, 4554 N. Broadway, Suite 325, Chicago (www.ericksonandoppenheimer.com).
The press conference will also serve as the public announcement of an October 17th community march against the alleged police misconduct of Officer Richard Fiorito, who is accused in federal lawsuits of framing lesbian and gay motorists for false DUI charges so that he could collect overtime pay for attending court. This year’s 11th Annual Matthew Shepard March for LGBT Freedom, organized by the Gay Liberation Network (www.GayLiberation.net), will march past Alderman Tom Tunney’s office and the Town Hall Police Station. The Chicago Police Department has taken no visible action against Fiorito.
For months now activists with the Gay Liberation Network have demanded that Fiorito’s policing powers be immediately revoked pending resolution of the federal lawsuits and the internal charges against him. Citing the 21 current federal suits, with 10-20 more to be filed within weeks, activists say that there is ample probable cause for the criminal arrest of Fiorito, and have demanded that the Cook County States Attorneys Office take such action immediately.
On Sunday night ABC 7 Chicago reported that Fiorito is the subject of a Cook County grand jury investigation and criminal charges are expected soon. Fiorito has announced his intention to assert his 5th Amendment rights at any civil depositions.
Victims of Fiorito’s alleged misconduct report that he not only conducted false arrests, but roughed some of them up while yelling anti-gay slurs. Several of the victims will be available for comment at the press conference, and copies of the video will also be distributed.