Chicago

Eddie Hicks — a former officer with the Chicago Police Department — will finally stand trial after avoiding justice for 14 years.

Hicks, who is now 70 years old, is a former Sergeant with the Chicago Police Department (CPD), serving from 1970 until 2000. He was a part of CPD’s narcotics division between 1992 and 1997, where he allegedly took part in shaking down suspected drug dealers for drugs, cash, and weapons.

Federal prosecutors have charged Sgt. Hicks with extortion, bribery, racketeering, drug conspiracy, theft of government funds, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug conspiracy. His trial is set to begin on Monday after the jury is selected.

Hicks was originally scheduled to go on trial for these charges back in 2003, but went on the lam until his arrest back in 2017 in Detroit, which resulted in Hicks being brought back to Chicago to stand trial. According to the Chicago Sun-Times, prosecutors found Hicks had obtained a Michigan drivers license and was using the assumed identity David Rose while he was a fugitive from justice.

Federal prosecutors said Hicks was a ringleader in an operation that saw him and other police officers shake down drug dealers for whatever they had in their possession and would, in turn, sell what they had stolen on the streets. Among the information obtained by the feds in videotaped recordings include Hicks using unmarked police cars and bogus search warrants to conduct his business. Hicks is accused of posing as a faux DEA agent to pull cars over and raid apartments and houses of known drug dealers throughout Chicagoland.

Among the major robberies Hicks is accused of includes $100,000 worth of marijuana that was stolen from a dealer, and restraining the resident of an apartment while posing as a DEA agent conducting a sting operation, robbing him of weapons, drugs, and money in the process. When Alsip, Illinois police tried to stop Hicks and his crew, he claimed he had a valid search warrant and proper jurisdiction to raid the apartment.

In recordings that will be admissible in court, Hicks is heard saying he was worried about the feds catching up to him and that he “had visions of driving that red vette,” in reference to a Chevrolet Corvette.

This isn’t the first time a major metropolitan area has seen corruption from its law enforcement officers.

In the 1990’s, New York City had a crew of crooked cops in Brooklyn who robbed drug dealers and dealt their drugs on the streets, led by Officer Michael Dowd. Dowd — who identified as both a “gangster” and a police officer, was apart of a gang of corrupt police officers in the NYPD that worked the 75th Precinct, which resided in the crime-ridden East York section of Brooklyn.

Dowd was finally arrested for his charges in 1992 after nearly a decade of performing security detail to known drug dealers and even using his authority as a police officer to move drugs the streets he was sworn to protect. A documentary called “The Seven Five” was made in 2014, and was based on the sting operation that brought down Dowd and his gang of dirty cops.

Dowd was sentenced to 14 years in prison for his charges – the same amount of years Chicago’s Eddie Hicks spent on the lam.

 

Brandon Howard is a Grit Post contributor, auto worker, and former public radio reporter based out of Lexington, Kentucky. Follow him on Twitter @mrpowerhoward.

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