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Chicago police officer who tipped off high school buddy to drug raid sentenced to five years in prison

December 14, 2017  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Chicago police officer who tipped off high school buddy to drug raid sentenced to five years in prison Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS

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A former Chicago police officer has been sentenced for tipping off a target of a high school pal who just happened to be a target of an undercover drug investigation.

Federal prosecutors said 47-year-old Ronald Coleman, an 18-year Chicago Police veteran and former member of a joint drug task force that included federal agents and Chicago Police, was sentenced to five years in prison on Wednesday.

Coleman was convicted in August on one count of obstruction of justice. He subsequently resigned from the forces two months later.

The U.S. Attorney’s office said in a press release that Coleman tipped off his friend’s cousin of an impending bust of a drug distribution network.

Coleman told the targets of the investigation that authorities had planned to execute search warrants of at least dozen homes in the North Lawndale neighborhood on the city’s West Side, including his friend’s house.

Days before the planned raids, a wiretap conversation picked up a suspect revealing they were tipped off by an officer of the bust.

“We gotta homie that works on the task force,” a caller said and warned the target to “clean the place up.”

During the sentencing hearing, Coleman continued to deny wrongdoing and maintained to U.S. District Judge Charles Norgle that he would never betray the trust of the community.

However, Norgle said Coleman “continued with the lie he told at trial.”

Coleman has also been named in several federal lawsuits, accusing the officer of participating in the illegal strip searches of suspects.

“Mr. Coleman’s actions were an egregious betrayal of public trust and undermined everything the men and women of CPD stand for because to all of us, this more than a job; it’s who we are,” Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said in a statement.

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