Thursday, July 22, 2010

Don't Release Cop Killers

It's ridiculous that this even has to be done, but it does, and it's important that it be done:
  • As a manhunt continued for the killers of the third Chicago police officer to be gunned down in two months, half a dozen officers gathered Wednesday to make sure another cop slain decades ago wasn't forgotten.

    In a sparsely furnished conference room at the Cook County court complex at 26th Street and California Avenue, a video camera silently recorded their anguished stories as they pleaded with the state parole board not to release Charles Connolly, who was convicted of killing Officer Tom Kelly.

  • Connolly is serving a sentence of up to 150 years in prison for the murder of Kelly, 26, and the wounding of his partner, Tom Neustrom, 23, during a traffic stop in March 1970. The two were on a break to pick up tuxedos for Kelly's upcoming wedding.

    Connolly shot Kelly between the eyes, then shot Neustrom in the chest and back. Connolly walked around the car to finish off Neustrom, but his gun was out of bullets, police said.

    Connolly is one of about 10 inmates convicted in Cook County of the murder or attempted murder of police officers who, under outdated sentencing laws, still have a chance at getting out of prison.

    In recent years, as these cases get older — and relatives and partners can no longer attend — police are making an effort to ensure the officers are still represented at parole hearings.
If no one shows up, we end up with a situation like we covered last week where the killer of a Northlake Police Officer is set to be released back into society in part because there was no one listed on the victim's side to protest the decision.

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10 Comments:

Anonymous BIG RED ONE said...

God bless Tom Kelly, Area 1 Task Force. He was shot and killed on a street stop at 45th and Vincennes.

7/22/2010 12:51:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Attended Cadet school with Tom. Coincidentally, Tom's fiance, Joanne, became engaged to another Police Officer a few years after Tom was murdered. That Police Officer, Pat Crowley, was shot and killed during a drug raid on 13 Sept. 1976. God Bless Tom Kelly, Pat Crowley and Joanne.
The 70's saw the shooting deaths of many officers. Unfortunately, it looks like history is repeating itself because the powers that be have taken away the ability of the CPD to police the mean streets of this city. Stay Safe.

7/22/2010 06:10:00 AM  
Blogger Crimefile said...

Mike Kelly left behind a grieving young fiancé named Johanna who later dated and fell in love with Mike’s pal, Pat Crowley.

Pat wanted to marry Johanna but she refused because he was a cop and she did not ever want to see a repeat of what happened to Mike. Pat agreed to quit being a cop as soon as he could join the fire department. They got married, in the church where Mike’s funeral took place instead of his wedding.

Soon, Johanna was back in that church for a second funeral

In September of 1976, Pat took a .41 magnum bullet between the eyes from a drug dealer he was trying to arrest. Watching poor Johanna at the wake and funeral was beyond ghastly for me. I was asked to fold and hand her the flag that draped Pat’s casket.

Poor Johanna looked like she’d never recover from that horror. I prayed for Johanna’s recovery for a very long time. I hope she’s somehow had a good life in spite of the unthinkable.

The two filthy M1s convicted of killing these two great cops should never see the light of day again.

7/22/2010 08:32:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps the Memorial Foundation cab post, 'in advance' the info on the 26th/Cal parole hearings.
Officer don't have to testify although it's strongly encouraged, even if it's a short couple of sentences.
Otherwise you can sit there in support.
The ASA still send my notices to my old unit. Since retired, I don't get them in time or not at all.
Also the Memorial Foundation sponsors a bus to go to Springfield for the EnBanc (sp?) hearings which shows our support and does not let one testify at these hearings.
It is attended by FOP reps as well.

Brothers like Tom Kelly et al need our support to keep these (sentenced) cop killers where they belong (hell, preferred) but for now in jail.

7/22/2010 09:04:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good subject for one of the new Mayoral candidates to pick up on, or maybe Ed Burke. You know he cares about us, right Ed?

7/22/2010 09:05:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I will pass this info to our CAPS group,our group is regularly present at hearings for support. Can you provide more info date time,etc.?

7/22/2010 01:00:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am Tom Kelly's niece and I found this story today. After listening to my dad last evening tell the accounts of his day at the hearing, and reading the Tribune article about the upcoming events in Springfield, I was compelled to look online for more information. I wrote to the Tribune authors as well, telling them a little of our family story as well as thanking them for keeping this story alive.

Thank you for this post. Our family missed him dearly.

7/22/2010 02:44:00 PM  
Blogger joshie said...

I can't believe they'd even consider letting a cretin like that back out onto the streets.

7/22/2010 11:50:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kill a cop, go straight to jail for the rest of your miserable life. No parole, no exceptions.

7/23/2010 07:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What bothers me as a citizen reader is no one seems to have an answer for this C inmate indeterminate sentencing problem. But I am not surprised as fucked up as this state is. It is a recurring nightmare for many survivors who have to literally beg the PRB to keep these assholes in prison where they belong. There is no organized publication I know of that alerts people (we citizens too) to these impending hearings. Why isn't some organization like the FOP or Memorial Foundation getting these hearing schedules publicized so people who do give a shit can go too? I emailed the FOP once to see if I could get access to hearing schedules or if they could tell me where I could get such info. No response. They or the Memorial Foundation should have an email blast set up that you can sign up for and be notified of the hearing date and when its time to write a letter to the PRB. AND ONLY 9 FUCKING COMMENTS!

7/23/2010 11:34:00 PM  

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