Timeline of Events Surrounding Police Assault on Bollyn
March 17, 2007
Timeline of Events Surrounding the Police Assault and TASERing of Christopher Bollyn, Journalist
Location: The Bollyn home, a suburban corner home in Hoffman Estates, Illinois
Date: August 15, 2006
Time: Evening, beginning at 7:20 p.m.
Duration of Operation: About 4 minutes
Length of Time Between Arrival of Police Tactical Unit and Assault on Bollyn: 50 seconds
Agencies Involved: 911 Northwest Central Dispatch System (NWCDS), Hoffman Estates Police Dept. (HEPD), Fire Dept. (HEFD)
Time followed by Description of Event
19:20 (Estimate) Christopher Bollyn sees a suspicious car with three armed men wearing body armor slowly pass his house for the second day in a row. Concerned, he discusses situation with his wife, Helje, and takes bicycle to store.
19:43:34 911 Call Received – From store, Bollyn calls police (911) about suspicious vehicle with armed men seemingly prowling around his home. Dispatcher agrees for a police officer to come to Bollyn house in 20 minutes. (Police log)
19:46:46 911 Call Entered – Bollyn’s call is entered into 911 Northwest Central Dispatch System (NWCDS). (Police log)
19:47:41 Police Officer Dispatched – 911 Dispatcher No. 5681 (NWCDS) dispatches uniformed HEPD Officer John Fitzgerald in vehicle No. 6131C to Bollyn residence. (Police log)
19:48:09 Three-man out-of-uniform tactical unit wearing body armor (No. 6744), the suspicious vehicle and men that provoked Bollyn's concern, logs in to assist Fitzgerald. (Police log)
Questions: Who authorized this unit to be sent to Bollyn house and why? Why is this unit still in the neighborhood after 30 minutes?
Chief of Police Clint Herdegen told Bollyn, on August 17, that he had sent this unit to their house to explain. Why would the C.O.P. send the suspicious vehicle with out-of-uniform armed men, the very cause of Bollyn's concern, back to his house? How could this be not seen as extremely provocative?
Clint Herdegen, Chief of Police of Hoffman Estates, arrives at the Bollyn trial.
20:01:03 Police Report "Fight in Progress" – 911 dispatcher No. 5681 overhears police saying that a "fight is in progress" at Bollyn residence and tells the fire dispatcher No. 5648, who is sitting beside him, to dispatch the fire department paramedics to the scene. (HEFD Deputy Chief Robert Gorvett)
At this point, Bollyn is not at home, there is no fight, and no police are even at the scene. Why did the police say there is a "fight in progress?"
Question: Why are the police talking about violence before they even arrive at the Bollyn house in response to a non-emergency suspicious vehicle call? What were the police preparing for?
This appears to be evidence that the assault on Bollyn was premeditated by members of the police force. This is why the recording of the police transmissions is required to show what was said and by whom.
20:01:06 Emergency ambulance and fire department vehicle (Engine No. 21) are dispatched by 911 (fire) dispatcher No. 5648.
20:02 (Est.) Bollyn arrives home on bicycle.
20:02:23 Assisting Officers En Route – Off. Joseph Kruschel (6132C) logs in as "en route" to Bollyn house. (Police log)
Officers Steven R. Hill and Kathryn Cawley, a juvenile officer, are en route to Bollyn house in car No. 6134C. (Police log)
20:03:11 Off. Wesley Schulz (6190C) is en route to Bollyn house. At this point, no fewer than eight police officers in 5 vehicles are en route to handle Bollyn's non-emergency call about a suspicious vehicle.
Questions: Why are so many officers involved? What's going on here? Are they all responding to the false claim made by the police that a fight is in progress?
20:03:28 First Officer On Scene – Off. Joseph Kruschel, a uniformed officer, in car No. 6132C, logs in as being on the scene. Off. Kruschel, however, apparently holds back and does not approach Bollyn home or present himself. (Police log)
Questions: Why is Off. Kruschel holding himself back? What is he waiting for? He is a uniformed officer. Why does he not approach the home and respond to the 911 call? Why does he allow out-of-uniform undercover officers to approach the Bollyn family first? Whose idea was this?
20:03:56 Out-of-Uniform Tactical Squad Arrives – Three-man undercover unit (6744) logs in "on scene." They park their unmarked car in the street blocking the Bollyn driveway and all three men wearing body armor march up the driveway to Bollyn house. (Police log)
Questions: After Bollyn was arrested, police told Jay Bollyn (Bollyn's older brother) at the scene that this was a tactical unit involved in "gang-suppression," although there is no gang activity in the neighborhood and never has been.
A month later, Lt. Joseph Perritano (HEPD) said this unit was actually engaged in "cross-training." The police report says that this unit had just made a traffic stop down the street prior to coming to Bollyn house. So, what exactly was the mission and purpose of this unit?
20:03:57 Emergency Paramedics Arrive – Fire department vehicles and paramedics arrive on the scene. The emergency vehicles arrive "on scene" exactly one second after police undercover tactical unit 6744. Paramedics remain about 50 feet from Bollyn house. (FD log)
Note: As C.O.P. Herdegen explained to the Bollyns, in a recorded conversation, the paramedics are called when somebody has been TASERed. This doesn't make sense because nobody has been TASERed and at this point the police are only responding to a non-emergency call about a suspicious vehicle. (August 17 meeting at Village Hall).
Herdegen is also contradicted by Deputy Fire Chief Robert Gorvett (HEFD), who told Bollyn that the department doesn't even have a policy or guidelines about how to treat TASER victims.
Question: We know that the paramedics are on the scene because the 911 dispatcher overheard police saying there was a "fight in progress." Why did C.O.P. Herdegen tell this lie to the Bollyns? The medics were not called because of the TASERing, because this had not yet occurred.
20:04:05 Mrs. Bollyn (Helje) notices the three out-of-uniform armed men wearing body armor marching up Bollyn driveway, and approaches them from the back yard where she had been gardening.
20:04:10 Seeing that the armed and armored men lack uniforms or any insignia, Helje asks them who they were. Catherine Bollyn (8-year-old daughter) comes out of the house to join her mother.
After being asked to show an ID, one man shows Helje his Illinois driver's license from the distance. Another says, "We are with the police."
From a distance of about 10 feet, according to a neighbor, Helje continues to ask the men to identify themselves. One man flashes some sort of a badge attached to his belt by briefly raising his body armor. Helje does not have a chance to see what it says.
The men refuse to give their names or explain their business. They do not leave or say that they have come in response to the 911 call.
Note: The identities of the three men was only revealed to the Bollyns one month later by Lt. Perritano.
20:04:20 Off. Tony Wanic (6191C) is en route to Bollyn house. Wanic is the 9th police officer and 6th police car responding to Bollyn call. (Police log)
Question: Why would police allocate so many men and resources to a non-emergency call about a suspicious vehicle, especially when they know that the vehicle in question is one of theirs?
20:04:26 Twenty-nine seconds after arriving, the fire department emergency crew notify dispatch that they are "back in service," although they do not leave the scene. (HEFD Deputy Chief Robert Gorvett)
Note: The "back in service" notification was given before the tactical unit assaulted and TASERed Bollyn – something they witnessed.
20:04:30 Christopher Bollyn comes out of the house and joins his wife and daughter standing about 6 to 10 feet from the three armed men wearing body armor on his driveway.
Bollyn asks, "Who are you? Why are you threatening our neighborhood?"
Bollyn points at the unmarked vehicle blocking his driveway, asking: "And what is this car you are driving around?"
The men do not explain that they are responding to the 911 call, refuse to identify themselves in any way, and will not answer any of his questions. No explanations or orders are given to Bollyn.
20:04:43 In the shadow of the Bollyn's maple tree, Officer Fitzgerald, the uniformed officer originally dispatched to handle the 911 call, logs in as "on scene" as he quietly pulls up beneath behind the unmarked car (6744). Fitzgerald remains in the car, however, and watches the assault.
There are now 5 police officers in three vehicles and two fire department vehicles on the scene at the Bollyn house. (Police log)
20:04:44 (Est.) Bollyn tells the men that he wants to get his brother Jay, the permanent resident, from the house. He turns and moves toward his front door.
20:04:46 Tactical Unit Assaults Bollyn - Two men from undercover unit 6744 suddenly tackle Bollyn from behind (#HEP 0650820) as he approaches his front door, trip him and throw him to the ground. (Police log)
20:04:50 Bollyn is brutally pinned down by Officers Stoy and Barber who immediately handcuff his left hand (Bollyn is left-handed) from behind while his right arm winds up beneath his torso during the fall.
Barber asks, "Where is his right arm?"
"It's underneath of me," Bollyn says and tells Helje to get his brother Jay (from the house) and Dale, the neighbor.
According to the police report, Bollyn had called out for the militia.
Stoy uses a pressure hold, kneeling with his full body weight (about 200 lbs.) on Bollyn's right temple. He continues this painful pressure on Bollyn's head, used to paralyze the person, for about two minutes.
Mrs. Bollyn approaches the scene with her 8-year-old daughter who is in distraught and crying. She still has her pruning snips in her hand. The third out-of-uniform man, later identified as Off. Felgenhauer, tells Mrs. Bollyn to drop the snips which Mrs. Bollyn immediately does.
Meanwhile, Barber kneels on Bollyn's right elbow, which is most likely the cause of the occult fracture in his elbow.
20:05 (Est.) Barber places TASER weapon (Model X-26) directly against Bollyn's lower back. Bollyn is TASERed with 50,000 volts for several seconds. No verbal warning of any kind was given prior to the TASERing.
Bollyn's wife notices that her husband's face has turned purple and that his eyes are bulging out of his head. He appears to have great difficulty breathing.
Bollyn is being TASERed while handcuffed and pinned beneath two men. He appears to be in danger of "positional asphyxiation."
Shocked by the brutality of the assault, Helje asks the men," What are you doing? Are you crazy?"
Off. Barber, who worked with the Dept. of Homeland Security in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, responds with an insulting remark, "You go back where you came from?"
Helje, who speaks fluent English, asks Barber, "How do you know I am not from here?"
Note: Barber's comment indicates he has been prepared with information about the Bollyn family in advance.
Helje goes to house, which is just a few steps away, to fetch her camera in order to take photographs.
Mrs. Bollyn attempts to photograph the assault but is physically blocked and threatened with arrest by Off. Felgenhauer. She is thus prevented from documenting the event and obtaining evidence of a crime, for example of the body armor vests of the three men, which the police claim had "POLICE" written on them. All three Bollyns claim that the vests had no visible police insignia.
Off. Felgenhauer takes out his little notebook and writes down Mrs. Bollyn’s name and date of birth as if she had done something wrong. Taking photographs or videos of a police assault is perfectly legal. Preventing a person from doing so is a criminal offense.
Time stamp of TASER report is about 4 minutes off. It shows the TASERing occurred at 20:00:36. Andrew Hinz of TASER International says this is not unusual.
20:06:14 Officers Hill and Cawley log in as being on scene. They are the 6th and 7th officers on the scene. (Police log)
20:06:15 Officer Kruschel, who was first officer on scene at 20:03:28, logs in again as being on scene. (Police log)
Questions: Why is Kruschel logging in a second time as being "on scene"? If he was on the scene at 20:03:28, as per the police log, why is he logging in once again as being "on scene" at the same place where he has been for nearly three minutes? Is he logging in again because he has come closer to the house from around the corner and gotten out of his car? (Police log)
20:06:24 Off. Scott Lawrence (6136C) logs in on scene, the 8th officer to appear at Bollyn residence. He is the first uniformed officer to come onto the Bollyn property and talk to Mrs. Bollyn. Bollyn is still being pinned to the ground by two officers. All other uniformed officers remained on the street and simply watched the tactical unit assault Bollyn.
Questions: Was this the "cross-training" Lt. Perritano spoke about? Did the police make a video of this assault?
Lawrence asks Mrs. Bollyn, "What's going on?"
Mrs. Bollyn tries to explain the situation pointing at her husband who is still brutally held down by Barber and Stoy. Off. Lawrence just says, "You are excited."
"Shouldn't I be excited when my husband has been brutalized and arrested for no reason?" Helje asks. "All he did was call 911."
Mrs. Bollyn asks Lawrence why such an army of police is involved in a simple non-emergency 911 call. Lawrence says, "Isn't it great that if something happens, so many police come so fast."
As Mrs. Bollyn is talking with Off. Lawrence, an out-of-uniform female officer, later identified as Off. Kathryn Cawley approaches little Catherine Bollyn, who is standing by her mother, and starts talking to her.
A moment later, Mrs. Bollyn notices that her child is gone. Without telling the mother, Off. Cawley has taken Catherine away. (Police log)
Mrs. Bollyn asks Off. Lawrence, "Where have you taken her?"
Lawrence says, "We are showing her the fire truck."
"Are you going to bring her back?" Mrs. Bollyn asks anxiously.
Mrs. Bollyn goes into house to put the camera away, and is in the middle of the living room when she notices that Off. Lawrence has followed her into the house.
Mrs. Bollyn turns around and says, “I did not ask you to come in.”
Off. Lawrence says, "I want to make sure you are alright."
20:06:30 (Est.) Bollyn is taken, handcuffed, and placed in rear seat of Fitzgerald's car (6131C).
20:06:40 (Est.) Christopher Albert, Bollyn's 11-year-old son comes home to find a huge police presence in his front yard and see that his father is being taken away. He becomes hysterical and needs to be calmed down by his uncle and his mother. Off. Lawrence who works with juveniles, witnesses the scene.
20:07:18 Off. Wesley Schulz (6190C) logs in on scene. Schulz is the 9th officer in the 6th police car on scene. (Police log)
Schulz approaches Fitzgerald's car. Fitzgerald tells Bollyn, "See this guy? He is going to beat the ---- out of you." Fitzgerald made several similar threats that Bollyn would be beaten at the station.
Knowing that Bollyn has been TASERed, the police prevent the medics from examining Bollyn – violating their own policy. Off. Schultz tells the medics that they are not needed, according to HEFD Deputy Chief Robert Gorvett.
Note: Had the medics examined Bollyn at the scene, they would have seen that he was not drunk or on drugs, as the police report claims. No tests were done to determine Bollyn's condition or extent of injuries.
20:07:29 Bollyn is taken to the police station by Off. Fitzgerald. (Police log)
During this trip Fitzgerald continued to abuse and threaten Bollyn. When Bollyn would lean toward the Plexiglas window between the front and back seats, Fitzgerald would suddenly slam on the brakes causing Bollyn's head to strike the window. This happened at least twice.
At police station a team of about 10 officers with rubber gloves are waiting in the garage. Upon entering garage, Fitzgerald rolls down his window and tells the gang that Bollyn has insulted the police.
"You take care of him now," Fitzgerald says.
When the police start to remove Bollyn from vehicle, he says he is a journalist and will write about the "treatment" he receives.
20:07:44 Off. Anthony Tenuto arrives on scene at Bollyn house. Tenuto is 10th officer in 7th police car on the scene. (Police log)
20:20 (Est.) Bollyn is Processed at Station – Bollyn's floral shirt is ripped off, tearing the shirt and sending the buttons flying. He is fingerprinted, photographed, and placed in a cell in which the water has been turned off.
When he asks Fitzgerald for a glass of water, he is told, "Drink from the toilet." Fitzgerald is clearly aware that there is no drinking water in the cell.
Asked why the unit had prowled around his house for two days in a row, Fitzgerald says, "We are watching you." Two other officers are with Fitzgerald when he says this.
22:00 (Est.) Off. Schulz comes to Bollyn's cell, where he is being held without water or medical attention, and told that because he has been TASERed, medics would have to examine him.
Bollyn tells Schulz that he needs medical attention for his arm. However, no medical attention is ever provided.
Deputy Fire Chief Gorvett says that no medics were called to police station during the entire time Bollyn was incarcerated. Gorvett found no calls from the police station to the fire department between 20:01 and 01:42 the next morning.
23:50 Bollyn is released after posting $100 bail and walks 4 miles home with untreated fractured elbow. Bollyn's elbow is X-rayed on Thursday and effusion indicative of occult fracture is found. His arm is put into a cast and sling.
During the entire time in the lock-up, Bollyn is denied water and medical treatment.
No examination for internal damage caused by the TASER is done until several weeks later. Bollyn is ill from the effects of the TASERing for two weeks.
Photo: Christopher Bollyn with his children near Schaumburg library two days after being brutally assaulted and TASERed by three undercover agents of the Hoffman Estates Police Department.
The evidence suggests that the police assault on Bollyn was premeditated and planned.
Among other things, this police assault has caused the Bollyn children to suffer mental anguish, the abuse of child sensibilities, the infliction of emotional pain, disruption of enjoyment of domestic tranquility, and the diminishment of innocence of childhood.
Bollyn with his children shortly after the police assault, which was witnessed by his 8-year-old daughter.
Originally published as "Timeline of Events of Police Assault on Christopher Bollyn, Journalist"
Posted By: Christopher Bollyn
Date: Saturday, March 17, 2007