History of Complaints Raise Questions for West Side Police Commander

According to analysis by WBEZ, a Chicago police officer promoted to district commander in August by Superintendent Eddie Johnson has an unusually high level of complaints filed against him.

In an article published Tuesday, WBEZ West Side reporter Chip Mitchell writes:

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“Cmdr. James Sanchez has been a subject of at least 90 formal complaints since joining the force in 1985, according to the records, obtained through the Illinois Freedom of Information Act. Most of those complaints alleged excessive force or improper searches.”

Sanchez also had ties earlier in his career to Jerome Finnigan, a notoriously corrupt Chicago police officer now serving time in federal prison after being convicted in a murder-for-hire plot.

But Johnson was fulsome in his praise for Sanchez at a press conference Tuesday:

“Commander Sanchez has been a great officer for years and I think I should point out that I think 89 of the 91 allegations against him were not sustained and they were investigated by an independent authority,” said Johnson. “CPD is not unlike the criminal justice system. There’s a due process. Those are allegations until they are found to be sustained. He has the support of the community and has done a phenomenal job throughout his career and he has my support.”

Mitchell joins Paris Schutz to discuss his story.

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