Skokie police officer charged in alleged brutality incident

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A Skokie police officer is facing felony criminal charges in connection with alleged brutality incident.

Police in the north suburb arrested 47-year-old Cassandra Feuerstein for DUI in March.

Surveillance video appears to show an officer, taking the woman by the arm and shoving her back into a cell.

Her face hit a bench and Feuerstein says she needed to undergo facial reconstructive surgery as a result.

The Skokie officer in the video 43-year-old Michael Hart, plead not guilty to felony aggravated battery and official misconduct charges.  He said little after his release on $75,000 dollar bond today.

State’s attorney Anita Alvarez  says officer Hart was upset because Feuerstein ignored his orders during processing.

Fuerstein suffered facial fractures in the incident. She had a titanium plate inserted into her cheek and required reconstructive surgery for her injuries according to the state’s attorney’s office.

Officer Hart’s attorney admitted to only seeing this small portion of the jail video but he is convinced the raw footage will prove his client is innocent.

Hart has been a a full time Skokie police officer since 1994.

He is scheduled in appear in bond court in Chicago next month.

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  • Chris

    Good! He should have been arrested a long time ago. He clearly used excessive and unnecessary force when handling this woman. If I did that to someone on the street, I would have been arrested immediately.

  • arubatom

    Another "tough cop" picking on a woman…just like the Chicago cop that punched out the woman bartender a few years back. Send these guys to gang-banger territory and let them have their "anger issues" there!!!

  • JP

    Another classic example of people not knowing what they’re talking about. To prove a battery occurred, you need to prove intent. There is NO WAY they’re going to be able to prove this officer INTENDED on causing great bodily harm to her. This was an ACCIDENT people. She drunkenly resisted a police officer, so he pushed her with the intent on getting her in the cell. To say otherwise, you’re just plain ignorant.

    Let’s just let drunk people do whatever they want while they’re under arrest, right?

    Unbelievable Anita Alvarez. You should be absolutely ashamed.

    • C_S

      Absolutely agree. You people need to watch this video and analyze how your precious, little, innocent, drunken prisoner ACTIVELY resisted the officer by pulling back onto the door frame, trying to stop herself from being placed into the cell she belongs into for driving while intoxicated. If anything, these officers should be thanked for proactively arresting this DUI driver. How this story would be so different if this drunk driver slammed into one of your loved ones and killed them.

      • esco

        If a picture's worth a thousand words, how much is video footage worth? A million?
        If someone is drunk and can't walk very well, how will they stop or break a fall when shoved while they're impaired?

    • JessMin

      This was no accident. He shoved her with more force than was necessary. It's clear on the video. And for her to have a face so broken that she needed a titanium plate and reconstructive surgery meant that he pushed her incredibly hard. He even admitted to being "upset". Accident, my hiney. If the technicality of the law means that there needs to be intent then the jerk my indeed get off because who's going to admit that he was mad and intended to push her that hard… his fellow officers?… ha! If he gets away with this it will be a travesty of justice in the worst way.

  • flippinirish72

    This officer is going to be found guilty! Yet another guy turned cop cuz he was bullied as a kid! Nd he has to beat up on drunk woman?? Regardless if she was intoxicated the video clearly shows him using excessive force! Nd she was not resisting!! Lmao! To all of you who think he will get off.. Think again! Maybe watch the video again but this time put your glasses on! I hope he gets what he deserves! Nd he should be ashamed!

  • Vdeb80

    The local police departments & police officers need the "TIME OUT CHAIR" to subdue the combative ; constantly resistive ; argumentative, irrational drunks. I have seen these used on the TV show, Las Vegas Nevada Lockup. That way the Crazy Drunks can be subdued safely & monitored until the Booze wears off.. It's not easy being a police officer they are human too. Having said that, I do think he should have cuffed her or restrained her in some way before letting his frustrations build to that point.
    It's unfortunate for her and to an extent the police officer, that this very intoxicated women hit her face on the bench. I'm glad she didn't kill some innocent person &/or herself in a car wreck!

  • Spectre

    Oh he's a professional alright, a professional @-hole! If cops are people too then he should be held accountable for his poor judgement just like the gal he THREW into the cell. If cops are allowed to give orders to civilians (what ever those orders might be) then they need to be held to a higher standard then civilians. It's call ABUSE OF POWER UNDER COLOR OF AUTHORITY. He should be fired, tried for the assault and never be allowed to act in a law enforcement capacity again.