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101 MPH in a 40 Zone

American Government Special Collections Reference Desk

101 MPH in a 40 Zone

Gus Philpott
Woodstock Advocate
January 8, 2008

Aren't you glad that you weren't in Lake County early Sunday morning, when Suzan Jackson is alleged to have been flying low at 101 MPH in a 40 zone. I mean, small planes take off at 65MPH. Did she think she was on a runway?

Let's be glad that it was a sergeant from the Lake County Sheriff's Department that stopped her and not a friend or regular street officer who might have been inclined to give a break to a fellow officer. Just how do you catch someone who is blasting along at 101? Was the speed checked by radar? Or by pursuit? How long did it take to get her stopped?

Jackson was charged with DUI, reckless driving and speeding, according to the Northwest Herald. Speeding over 40MPH over the posted limit qualifies for a Reckless Driving charge. As a police officer, Jackson knew to refuse a breathalyzer test. She was a full-time cop in Kildeer (yes, Virginia; there really is a Kildeer, Ill.) and a part-time cop in Lakemoor.

How interesting to learn in the article of an "incident" involving a firearm (that's a gun, folks) on December 10 in the parking lot at the Iron Bull Tavern in Lakemoor! According to the Northwest Herald and Nicole Owens, "chief criminal of the McHenry County State's Attorney's office" (I think the reporter meant "chief criminal prosecuting attorney"), Jackson was involved in some way, at least as a witness.

What's really going on at the Lakemoor PD, which didn't report that "incident" to the State's Attorney's office until December 18. Where was the newspaper reporting on that? Did I miss it or was there none? A search on www.nwherald.com and on www.dailyherald.com does not locate any news about the December 10 incident.

Northern Illinois is not the place to mess with cops. I am acquainted with individuals who have run afoul of cops in some of the small towns between Woodstock and Lake Michigan. Some drivers have been regularly harassed by being stopped repeatedly "just because." And, of course, many have read of the beating of one man by three cops (or former cops) outside a bar that resulted in severe injuries to him.

And guess what? Jackson is reportedly the former wife of one of the cops convicted in that beating.

Cops should be the first to obey laws, not the last. They need to be scrupulous in their conduct on-duty and off-duty. And their superiors need to know what is going on with their officers while they are on-duty and off-duty. Superiors, including chiefs, must pay intense attention to the conduct of their officers and be alert for the "bad apples" that are going to spoil the entire barrel.

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