Updated post: Typo corrected - thanks Snethen! ABC7 has the video here. RIP Officer and God bless your friends and family who have had to live with a gaping hole in their hearts ever since you were savagely taken away from them.
Today was the en banque parole hearing for the offender who murdered Chicago Police Officer Patrick J. Crowley
About 40 Chicago Police Officers attended today's hearing. The parole request was DENIED. The offender, Willie C. Lewis, will be up for another review in 3 years.
Lewis (IDOC#C71971) was convicted of murdering Officer Crowley and was sentenced to 500 years on prison for his crimes.
The facts of the case, which are undisputed by both sides are these: On September 13, 1976 Officer Crowley and two other officers were conducting an undercover drug operation in the 6200 block of South Aberdeen. Lewis had a long rap sheet for violent crimes; PSMV, narcotics, gun violations, robberies and batteries. He'd been layed off from his job in 1974 and, presumably turned to selling narcotics in order to supplement his income.
The officers saw a drug buyer bring a stereo to the back of Lewis's home and engage in a conversation. The buyer turned and left. The officers stopped him and told him to go back to Lewis and take whatever offer that he made for the item (the buyer was attempting to exchange the item for drugs.) When the buyer returned, Lewis opened his burglar bars and knelt down to examine the stereo.
At this point, the officer broke cover, announced their office and approached. The buyer got between Lewis and Crowley and when Lewis and the officer were about 4 feet apart, Lewis pulled out a .44 magnum and shot him once between the eyes.
The maddening aspect of attending these hearings is how much the committee has to hear all about the offender and what he has done with his life. There wasn't a mention of the victim or his family. There wasn't a mention of how his children had to grow up without a father, or how a wife had to cope with 2 small children without a loving husband at her side.
Today's hearing was much the same. Jessie Madison is the pro-prisoner liaison. He goes to the prison and interviews the offenders and gathers as much information as he can. Today he attempted to make the case that Lewis deserves to be paroled because, in Lewis's opinion he committed manslaughter.
In Lewis's twisted view of reality, he acknowledges shooting Officer Crowley but claims that Crowley never announced his office. Lewis further believes that when the buyer returned with the stereo, Lewis believed he was being set up to be robbed - thus justifying the acquisition of a .44 magnum.
It was pathetic that this nauseating excuse for a human being (Lewis) is even allowed to come up with some warped rationale for murdering another person, but that is the state of our justice system. They bend over backwards for the offender, and give cursory attention to the victim.
One more detail that bothered me was that liaison brought up that Crowley was thought of as an "aggressive" officer and had accumulated a number of complaints for his tough policing style. A board member, Mr. Diaz, a former police officer himself had to educate the board as to why aggressive officers get more complaints: they are interacting with more people and, therefore more criminals. When caught, criminals will do whatever it takes to beat their charges - including make false allegations against those officers who arrested him.
Well justice was served today. God bless all the officers who attended today's hearing. Rot in Prison, Willie!