Oswego cop resigns after police standoff in Channahon
Beacon-News Staff March 21, 2013 10:26AM
John P. Wolfinbarger
Updated: April 23, 2013 2:02PM
OSWEGO — The Oswego police officer charged last week after a brief standoff with officers outside a Will County pizza parlor has resigned.
Officer John Wolfinbarger’s resignation was effective Wednesday, the Oswego Police Department said.
Wolfinbarger, 43, was immediately placed on administrative leave after the Oct. 13 incident at a restaurant in Channahon, southwest of Joliet.
An 11-year veteran of the Oswego force, Wolfinbarger was off-duty when he tried to walk into the back office at the restaurant.
“He was very upset when he was told customers weren’t allowed in the office and began yelling,” Channahon Police Chief Jeff Wold said. “During the confrontation the employee could see he was carrying a handgun in his waistband.”
Wolfinbarger went out to the parking lot and got into a pickup truck, and restaurant employees called police. Responding officers drew their weapons “and ordered him to get out of the vehicle. He would not get out or identify himself,” Wold said.
Wolfinbarger eventually surrendered and handed over a loaded handgun.
He was charged with obstructing a police officer, disorderly conduct and drunken driving.
Oswego Police Chief Dwight Baird said his department would immediately launch an investigation.
“This is a top priority for us. We need to maintain the public’s trust and protect the officer’s rights,” Baird said last week.
The Police Department said Wolfinbarger submitted his resignation letter on Wednesday at 6 p.m. The department accepted it and closed its internal investigation of the incident.
“We expect our employees to act in a lawful, professional and respectful manner both on and off duty,” the department said in a release.
Oswego Police Chief Dwight Baird said the resignation would not bar Wolfinbarger from serving as an officer in the future, but that it would likely turn up in a background check done by many police departments as part of the hiring process.
Baird said he wasn’t necessarily expecting the resignation, but that often times it happens “after an incident like this.”
“Anytime that you lose someone it definitely affects the department,” he said, “but you always wish them the best in their future endeavors.”