LYNWOOD | The Village Fire and Police Board reinstated a police officer Monday who was fired last year after his squad car was stolen in December 2012 by a criminal suspect.
The Police Board’s decision means the village will not be hit with $1,000-per-day fines that would have been imposed had they not reinstated Joseph Marigliano. Cook County Judge Mary L. Mikva imposed the fine after she found the board in contempt of court for not promptly complying with her past rulings to reinstate Marigliano.
The Police Board dismissed Marigliano in the spring of 2013. They changed the punishment Monday to a 30-day suspension, which has been served.
Christopher Cooper, an attorney appointed by the Fraternal Order of Police for Marigliano, said his badge was returned to him Monday afternoon.
In a letter from Police Deputy Chief Timothy Shubert, Marigliano was told that because of the length of his time away from work, he would have to complete a field training program before being returned to solo patrol duty. He was told his first shift with another officer would be Wednesday, and the remainder of his training schedule would be posted by July 23.
During the past 15 months, Marigliano has worked part-time as a police officer with the department at Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills.
Although the board voted to comply with the judge’s order and bring back Marigliano, members prevented Cooper from making public statements before the board.
“The board complied with the judge’s order,” said Timothy Lapp, an attorney representing the Police Board.
Cooper said, “They would not allow me to speak, even though I had every right to because this is a public hearing.”
Another hearing is scheduled before Mikva at the Daley Center in Chicago on July 23, although that hearing is primarily for the judge to be assured that Lynwood officials are in compliance with her ruling. Mikva deemed the dismissal too harsh and ruled a suspension more appropriate.
The matter then will shift to the Illinois appellate court district based in Chicago, where an appeal was formally filed earlier this year.
Lapp said that hearings have yet to be scheduled.
Lapp said it is possible he will ask the appeals court to issue a stay of Mikva’s ruling, which would mean it would not have to be enforced while the appeal is taking place.
That could result in Marigliano losing his job again, if Police Board officials were inclined to do so. But Lapp said Monday village officials are not thinking such thoughts.
“We’re focused on being in compliance with the court,” Lapp said.