Joliet police arrest memo raises questions

City Council members say they plan to find out more regarding arrest and city manager’s email

City Council members said they have questions about an email from the city manager informing them of the arrest of a police officer.

Council members received an email from City Manager James Capparelli on March 27 informing them that an unnamed officer had been taken into custody the previous night by Joliet police on charges of domestic battery and possession of a controlled substance.

The email only identifies the officer as “a Joliet police officer” and “a newer officer.”

The memo was sent the morning after officer Andrew McCue was arrested after a domestic incident. McCue was charged Monday by the Will County State’s Attorney’s Office with domestic battery. He does not face any drug charges.

Capparelli would not discuss the email, calling it a personnel matter.

Some council members, however, said they have questions for the next council meeting Monday.

Council member Bettye Gavin said she “planned to ask about it in closed session on Monday.”

Council member Sherri Reardon said she did not know why the email mentioned a charge of possession of a controlled substance.

“We’ll probably ask some questions at the meeting in closed session, but I don’t know why,” Reardon said.

Council member Michael Turk said he did not know of any other Joliet police officers arrested March 27.

“I haven’t heard. All I know is the email he sent out,” Turk said. “I think we’ll probably have some questions.”

Mayor Bob O’Dekirk said his questions concern how the contents of Capparelli’s email were revealed beyond the City Council.

“I am concerned that the city manager sends an email to eight council members and the mayor, and it gets in [the Herald-News’] hands,” O’Dekirk said, adding that the email dealt with a personnel matter.

Joliet police, who issued a news release Monday stating that McCue was “taken into custody for domestic battery,” would not discuss details of the case.

Sgt. Dwayne English referred questions to the Will County State’s Attorney’s Office, “who opined that McCue be charged with domestic battery.”

State’s attorney’s office spokeswoman Carol Cheney said she was “not able to comment at this time, as this is a pending matter.”

McCue was one of the officers involved in the January 2020 drug arrest of Eric Lurry, who lapsed into a coma and died from what authorities determined to be an overdose of self-ingested narcotics.

Video of the arrest shows McCue and another officer probing Lurry’s mouth and removing what appeared to be small plastic bags that police said contained narcotics.

Reporter Felix Sarver contributed to this story.

Bob Okon

Bob Okon covers local government for The Herald-News