On March 19, 2010, a Cook County jury awarded our client Rodolfo Rivera a $200,000.00 verdict. Mr. Rivera, a landscaper, was attacked by a police dog and falsely charged with aggravated battery by Streamwood police officer Alexander Vanderlinden.
The incident took place on June 24, 2006. Mr. Rivera was at a birthday party close to his home in Streamwood. The party was crashed by some loud troublemakers. The Rivera family called the police.
At least 8-10 police officers responded to the disturbance call, including Vanderlinden. While the police were talking to the people on the scene, Officer Vanderlinden kicked Mr. Rivera ,which caused his canine to bite Mr. Rivera.
Mr. Rivera was placed under arrest even thought he was in immense pain from the dog bite. An ambulance came to the scene and transported Mr. Rivera to St. Alexius hospital. Mr. Rivera received treatment for his wounds from the dog bite, including stitches.
Officer Vanderlinden charged Mr. Rivera with aggravated battery to a police officer, a felony crime punishable by 3-7 years in prison. On July 3, 2006, there was a preliminary hearing. The judge found that the was not probable cause for the charge of felony aggravated battery, and the charge was dismissed. Mr. Rivera spent almost two weeks in the Cook County Jail.
Jackowiak Law Offices filed suit on behalf of Mr. Rivera on April 5, 2007. The Defendants’ lawyers asserted that Plaintiff’s claims were frivolous and would not offer even a single dollar to settle the case. Following trial, the jury awarded Mr. Rivera $200,000.00.
The verdict was covered in The Daily Herald, The Chicago Sun-Times, Telemundo, Univision, and other media outlets.