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01-21-09, 10:23 PM #1
Chicago Alderman arrested for DUI, says she was not drunk and was berated by police
A Chicago alderman arrested on drunken driving charges early this morning insists she was not drunk — and says she was berated by three Chicago Police officers who yelled at her and refused to give her their badge numbers.
As proof of her sobriety, Ald. Sharon Dixon (24th) said she never used the bathroom once during her seven hours at at North Side police station. She also said she believes officers arrested her because she was “going to write them up” for “mistreating” her.
“If I was intoxicated like they said, wouldn’t you think I would have to go to the bathroom?” Dixon told the Chicago Sun-Times.
But according to arrest reports from the early Wednesday incident, it was Dixon who yelled at officers to let her through the scene of a fatal fire and later circled a squad car on foot before pulling at the door handle of the vehicle. Dixon also failed a field sobriety test, police said.
Dixon’s allegations are under investigation but so far it appears the traffic control officers at the scene acted appropriately, a source familiar with details of the arrest said. Police are also checking the area for police cameras to see whether the arrest was caught on tape.
Dixon, in an interview with the Sun-Times, admitted she had consumed “some” wine over a six- or seven-hour visit at a friend’s house Tuesday evening. But she said she was not drunk and was not upset that she could not pass through the 6900 block of North Sheridan Road in Rogers Park, where she was arrested. The road was blocked because a woman in her 50s had died in an apartment fire on the next block, and fire equipment was still in the street.
Dixon said she was upset with the way the officers spoke to her and also because they refused to provide her with badge numbers.
Dixon said the street did not appear completely closed when she got to the scene at about 1:30 a.m. because oncoming traffic was moving. She said there was a police car against a “sidewalk’’ and didn’t appear to be blocking the street.
“All the sudden the police car starts pulling out in the street blocking me,” she said, adding an officer inside was yelling. “When I go out of the car she was still yelling. I introduced myself and her tone continued. I asked for her badge number. She didn’t want to give me her badge number. She was just turning away from me.”
At one point, Dixon said the officers got back into squad and shut the door, brushing her cheek.
A sergeant who arrived on the scene also yelled at her to “go home,’’ Dixon said.
According to the Chicago Police reports, Dixon asked officers to move a marked squad car that had its emergency lights on when she pulled up to the block so that she could get through.
She then became verbally abusive, even after being told she should leave the location for traffic control and so the Chicago Fire Department could get through, the report said.
Dixon then moved her car to the corner, got out and walked over to the squad, circled it on foot, pulled on a door handle and demanded a badge number from an officer inside, police said.
A sergeant was called to the scene, and he told her the street was closed and to leave. After the sergeant left, Dixon allegedly got out of her car and walked back into traffic. At this point, officers approached her again and smelled alcohol on her breath.
Dixon then admitted to consuming a few glasses of red wine and failed a field sobriety test, according to the reports. She also was cited for failing to have insurance.
“I wasn’t trying to throw my weight around,” she said. “I am not a power-trip alderman. Not at all. I just thought it was appropriate to introduce myself.”
Dixon, who said she was handcuffed to a wall for nearly seven hours at a district lockup, said she had her insurance card and was not drunk.
She also questions why officers told her to leave the scene if she was drunk. But sources said officers acted as soon as they smelled the alcohol on her breath — and that they were compelled to. Until then, they believed it was only an obstruction charge, the sources said.
Dixon believes she was arrested because the officers believed they were going to get in trouble.
“I refused to go away. I wanted their badge numbers,’’ she said. “I wanted people to know about this; how they were treating, or mistreating, citizens. And I thought abusing their power. ...What happened was they thought I was going to write them up, and I was. And so they decided to flip it on me.”
Dixon, 46, of the 1600 block of South Central Park Avenue, was charged with driving under the influence, obstructing a police officer, obstruction of traffic and operating a vehicle without insurance.
Already a well-known activist in the Lawndale community where she was raised, Dixon quit her job in October 2006 to focus on her aldermanic campaign and was sworn into office on May 21, 2007, according to the alderman’s Web site.
The 24th Ward office is at 2100 S. Marshall Blvd. in the Southwest Side’s Lawndale neighborhood.
01-22-09, 12:10 AM #2
It's not in the article, but I wonder did the Alderwoman refused to take the chemical test/breathalyzer? Or did the officers not even try that?CHIRP! CHIRP!
01-22-09, 12:29 AM #3
Hmm, sounds like the she would make the perfect next governor of Illinois.SI VIS PACEM PARA BELLUM-Ex-Sheriff Martin Howe to Will Kane in "High Noon"
"It's a great life. You risk your skin catching killers and the juries turn them loose so they can come back and shoot at you again. If your honest , your poor your whole life. And , In the end , you wind up dying all alone on some dirty street. For what? For nothing. For a tin star."
Far from being a handicap to command, compassion is the measure of it. For unless one values the lives of his soldiers and is tormented by their ordeals , he is unfit to command.
-General Omar Bradley, United States Army
01-22-09, 12:33 AM #4
Gee, no one would EVER ask to go through a closed road would they??
I'm sure she was a total sweetheart.
01-22-09, 10:58 AM #5
Meanwhile, fishing in Russia:
"When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -- Frederic Bastiat
"Certainly there is no hunting like the hunting of man and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never really care for anything else thereafter." Ernest Hemingway
The opinions given in my signatures & threads DO NOT reflect the opinions, views, policies, and/or procedures of my employing agency. They are my personal opinions only, thereby releasing my agency of any liability, or involvement in anything posted under the username "Five-0" on Officerresource.com
01-22-09, 11:12 AM #6
I thought it was against the law in Chicago to arrest an Alderman...When I used to be somebody (I'm center top)
"A burning desire for social justice is never a substitute for knowing what you're talking about". -Thomas Sowell-
01-23-09, 12:41 AM #7"When a crime is committed, liberals blame society. Conservatives blame the criminal." -Debra Saunders
Old Scottish Motto- "nemo me impune laccessit". It still holds true today.
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