Brother, Can You Spare a Dime?
- A jury awarded a husband and wife $9.75 million in damages Thursday for a smear and terror campaign aimed at them after they accused a police officer of corruption while working as federal agents.
Jurors leaving the court scoffed at city officials' claim that they conducted an 18-month investigation of Miedzianowski but never interviewed Klipfel and Casali, and were unable to uncover evidence of corruption at the time.
The jury awarded Klipfel $7.75 million for violation of her rights by both Miedzianowski and the city. It awarded her $1 million for defamation of character by Miedzianowski while acting in his role as a city employee.
It also awarded Casali $1 million for Miedzianowski's violation of his rights while acting as a city employee.
Saltzberg said the city would have to pay the entire $9.75 million because Miedzianowski is believed to have no money. She said the couple's attorneys would ask the court to award them fees in the $1 million range.
- Jurors deliberated for almost two days before reaching the decision Thursday afternoon. They listened to testimony from current police Superintendent Phil Cline and from the former head of internal affairs Ray Risley.
The couple accused Risley and the department of covering up Miedzianowski's illegal activity. And jurors believed them.
"It gets down to, Were we dealing with a crooked Chicago police officer? And was the system protecting him? It sure seemed like it," said Joe Karl, juror.