Trial begins for ex-Joliet cop accused of beating woman
By Janet Lundquist email@example.com June 24, 2013 2:00PM
Shantique Jackson had these pictures taken with her cell phone at the Joliet Police Station and Silver Cross Hospital following her alleged beating by Officer Tom O’Connor during an arrest Feb. 9. O’Connor was fired for excessive force four days later after internal affairs reviewed the incident. Supplied photo
Updated: July 26, 2013 6:24AM
Jury selection began Monday in Will County for the trial of a former Joliet police officer accused of beating a woman who had called police to report a fight with her boyfriend.
Shantique Jackson claims Thomas B. O’Connor, 37, gave her a concussion, a nasal fracture, a corneal abrasion and bruises on her face and scalp during a beating in a hotel parking lot in February 2012.
O’Connor, of 2411 Black Road in Joliet, was fired from the city police force after the incident. He faces charges of aggravated battery, battery and official misconduct.
Joliet police have said O’Connor’s actions crossed the line. But O’Connor’s attorney, Jeff Tomczak, has said O’Connor was doing his job — attempting to take control of a situation and separate two people before their dispute escalated.
Authorities say O’Connor repeatedly punched Jackson, 42, in the early-morning hours of Feb. 9, 2012, in the parking lot of the Star Inn, 2219 W. Jefferson St., after Jackson called police to report a fight with her boyfriend.
Jackson said she was at the motel to see her boyfriend, and caught him with another woman.
While O’Connor was there, Jackson and her boyfriend began to argue again. During the fight O’Connor allegedly grabbed Jackson, slammed her to the hood of a car in the parking lot and punched her in the face.
Surveillance cameras captured the incident, attorneys said.
That day, Joliet police began an internal investigation of O’Connor’s possible use of excessive force. O’Connor was placed on administrative duties and later fired.