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Question of the day

Wednesday, Jun 17, 2020 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Mark Maxwell

Illinois Attorney General Kwame Raoul advocated for a new state licensing program to register local law enforcement officers in an interview that aired Sunday on Capitol Connection.

Raoul, the state’s top legal officer, said a statewide licensing program would instill a “greater fear of consequence” to serve as a deterrent to prevent police abuses of power.

“I think the vast majority of law enforcement officers are quite frankly p****d off that they all get painted with a bad, broad brush,” Raoul said, adding that a state licensing program is “in the interest of preserving the reputation of law enforcement in general and lifting up the trust of the public and police officers.”

Raoul credited his former colleague Tim Bivins, a former Republican state Senator and Lee County Sheriff, with coming up with the proposal to license local law enforcement officers years ago, although the proposal was left out of a package of reforms that became law.

“I don’t agree with those who say we should just get rid of police officers,” he said. “I don’t agree with those who have been throwing stuff at police officers, or who have lit a police department on fire, or destroyed police cars, or rammed their car into a police car, or done other harm to police officers, because these are men and women who go out every day and put themselves on the line in the interest of public safety. So it’s on behalf of them that I propose this to create a consequence and a deterrence to the bad officer that gives them all, unfortunately, a bad name.”

* Center Square

Ed Wojcicki, head of the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, said there could be some good discussions.

“We recognize that the public wants accountability from the police and licensing, if done properly, might be a way to get that done better,” he said. […]

State Rep. John Cabello, R-Machesney Park, who is also a police officer, said the discussion takes away from dealing with public corruption within the state legislature.

“I will talk about that after we start maybe licensing some of our state representatives and senators,” Cabello said.

Legislators are essentially licensed every two years in the House and every 2-4 years in the Senate, John.

* Tribune editorial

Creating another layer of state bureaucracy also would not be cheap or quick. When it comes to how much it would cost and how long it would take, the attorney general acknowledges, “We’re figuring it out.” There are tens of thousands of sworn law enforcement officers in Illinois. Licensing them all would be a lengthy, expensive undertaking that may not pass the cost-benefit test.

Um, people generally pay for their own licenses. But they’re right that it will take quite a while to set this up and roll it out.

* Chicago Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara

Now we want to create another layer of oversight, now we want to license officers. It’s just another way to try and circumvent the collective bargaining rights of our members to try and fire them. Because if they can get them, if they force them to have licenses, now you can suspend your license and now you’re basically out of work anyway.

That’s probably true.

OK, with the obvious caveat that there are never any single magical fixes that will solve every problem…

* The Question: Do you support the concept of licensing all police officers in Illinois? Take the poll and then explain your answer in comments, please…

find bike trails


  1. - Langhorne - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:09 pm:

    I haven’t heard any convincing arguments thus far for licensing of police. It seems to be more a matter of creating something that can be taken away as a punishment.

  2. - Anon E Moose - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:10 pm:

    State’s Attorney’s cannot unionize.

  3. - Excitable Boy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:10 pm:

    No. Policing powers can be stripped already, licensing won’t change the systemic problems inherent to our current form of policing.

    We need real change, not another layer of red tape.

  4. - Ron - In Texas - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:13 pm:

    All Illinois officers already are mandated to pass state required training (CPD does requires more than that).

    This is a play to emotion and a “quick fix” that wont really fix anything.

    Now… Mandated on going training, required time off the street for classroom training AND in person scenario based training doing several times a year MINIMUM is a better start.

    But in that requires $. more cops to cover the “time off the street” and trainers, locations, etc. cities dont want to pay that.

  5. - Dotnonymous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:14 pm:

    The State licenses Barbers…who rarely murder their clients…so,Yeah.

  6. - Glengarry - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:14 pm:

    Licensure with increased education requirements on par with Europe’s police forces would work for me.

  7. - Left Leaner - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:16 pm:

    We license attorneys who practice the law and doctors who literally make life and deaths decisions every day.

    Given that police officers enforce the law and make life and death decisions, it seems logical to require licensing to me.

  8. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:18 pm:

    ===Mandated on going training===

    Better training, while needed, isn’t gonna weed out teachers, barbers or cops who shouldn’t be there in the first place. Stick to the topic.

  9. - Ron - In Texas - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:18 pm:

    @Left Leaner
    We also have a state level certification in Illinois already. Most dont know that.

  10. - Proud Sucker - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:18 pm:

    Voted yes. I am an engineer and am licensed/registered. Doctors, Lawyers, CPA’s, Beauticians, etc. are as well. Professionals who work for the public are required to hold credentials and/or pass tests. A while ago we, as a society, decided that this was in the public’s best interest. Qualified police officers are as important, if not more, than those professions we currently license and register.

  11. - Curious Cat - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:22 pm:

    How many of the mandated trainings for LEOs are simply online modules?

  12. - Donnie Elgin - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:22 pm:

    Voted No - Police (not including the ISP) are hired trained evaluated and paid at the local level. The last thing we need is more bureaucracy from Springfield. If there are bad cops in a community then local folks should look to their Mayors/trustees to fix the problem. Also, pay attention when the local police union such as the FOP is negotiating a new contract - ask about the process for removing a bad Police officer. Basically get involved and stay involved locally.

  13. - OneMan - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:23 pm:

    Nurses are licensed and in some places unionized and manage to be able to make that work.

    It seems that other professions that can screw up and kill you are licensed in this state.

  14. - Ron - In Texas - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:23 pm:


    Sorry, thought that was core to the topic. simple licensing to me doesn’t change that. If it were proposed that licensing along with defined standards, training, etc. I could understand that. And re certification at some regular intervalis a good idea.

    But simple licensing, without these other things, is just another level allowing a politician to call for pulling of a state license…

    I think cops are undertrained, lack scenario training and skills. YES, weed out the bad. But also stop the bad habits and poor decision making from ever starting.

  15. - RuralKing - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:23 pm:

    I voted yes, but would like to offer a caveat. IF the license is issued through ISP and it can only be pulled through a peer-reviewed system with legal protection for the accused and the local jurisdictions pay for the license (as well as the legal fees of those who are found faultless while defending themselves), then sure. Otherwise, I’m a no

  16. - West Sider - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:24 pm:

    The people I know who are angry at police- are angry because of our own personal mistreatment- as much as the horrific acts seen on camera and in the news. We know what cops are “really” like.

    Police can either be part of the solution- or people will do what they can- whether effective or not.

  17. - Green Street Illini - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:25 pm:

    You can’t identify a solution until you identify the problem. If the problem is that the bad acts of police aren’t sufficiently punished, mandate that the relevant state’s attorney bring any police-involved shooting to trial. If the problem is that police killings are too high, take their guns away. If the problem is the police union, negotiate the next contract better or amend the state constitution. There are other views on what the problem is, but until we know what we’re fixing, we’re not going to know what tool to use. It’s not clear to me what problem licensing solves.

  18. - fs - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:26 pm:

    The devil is always in the details. Who oversees it, what are the standards, etc., etc. The Impact on collective bargaining argument isn’t without merit. Is a State licensing board going to be in effect a superior authority in terms of discipline over local authorities? That’s going to require a lot of process, which will make any punishment or appeals drag on for years. It seems like a lot of the perceived problems is officers not being punished, or punishment not being given fast enough. Is having an additional layer of bureaucracy really going to change that, or will the inevitable politics that will come into play from various factions wanting to make the decisions just add to potential outs that an officer might have to avoid punishment?

    Just because somethings sounds good on paper, doesn’t mean it will lead you to the results you want.

  19. - Excitable Boy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:27 pm:

    - ask about the process for removing a bad Police officer. -

    The FOP has made it very clear that this is not on the table.

  20. - frisbee - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:28 pm:

    Until the police can police themselves the state should license them. How much has Chicago had to pay out due to Jon Burge?

    To the post,

    I can go to IDFPR website right now and lookup the license of an acupuncture therapist, cannabis agent or an interior designer so someone who is legally allowed to use lethal force anytime they fear for their life should need to be licensed. And that license should be hard to get and easy to lose.

  21. - Lester Holt’s Mustache - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:29 pm:

    Waste of time. Politicians are never going to have the juevos to decertify the FOP, and after a few months of good behavior, cops are going to go back to treating brown people as sub-human anyway because the FOP will back them up regardless of what they do in the streets. Requiring licenses isn’t going to change that. Besides, review boards or arbitrators would just reinstate any licenses that are revoked once an appeal is filed. Cops have municipalities by the shorthairs, and the FOP knows it only too well.

  22. - bhartbanjo - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:30 pm:

    I’m a yes. Licensing could do more good than harm, I think. But I agree that some sort of certification, training, standards that are associated with being licensed are what would make it worthwhile.

  23. - Elmer Keith - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:33 pm:

    “…a statewide licensing program would instill a “greater fear of consequence” to serve as a deterrent to prevent police abuses of power.” I expect that any state licensing system will at most get them fired from their jobs. The way to hold police criminals accountable is to prosecute them in criminal court and sentence them to prison, period. You could have a licensing board packed with cops, the way police pension boards have cops, which is why Jon Burge still had his CPD pension when he died.

    When Raoul was chairman of Senate Judiciary, he did nothing to oppose Duty to Inform in Brandon Phelps’ 2013 concealed carry bill, which was put in there by police unions. Raoul did not put criminal penalties for deleting video in the Body Cam bill he sponsored in 2015, because police unions didn’t want it. Why doesn’t Raoul endorse a bill adding police crimes to the statewide grand jury act, so the AG’s office can directly prosecute police criminals? How can you take Raoul seriously on police reform based on his track record?

  24. - shocked - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:34 pm:

    I voted no, but I think licensing police and stripping licenses for bad behavior is better than nothing. However, I think licensing police gives them more credibility in the current political/policy debate, and defending police and reforming how we address public safety as a whole is the right way to approach the problem. Small scale reform has done little to end the epidemic of police murdering people of color and using excessive force generally

  25. - thoughts matter - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:41 pm:

    Voted yes. As other comments state, lots of professions are licensed by the state. All meant to protect the public from unqualified or fraudulent people. Most of which do not have the authority to detain or arrest people or to carry a deadly weapon. If you don’t object to requiring nurses etc to be licensed then why do you object to police officers being licensed? I’f you do object - Seriously pay attention to the first thought that enters your mind when you read that question. I’m willing to bet the answer has more to do with your personal political beliefs than the actual subject.

  26. - Pundent - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:44 pm:

    =If there are bad cops in a community then local folks should look to their Mayors/trustees to fix the problem.=

    Having spent some time working in local government I have a good sense of the influence cops (and firefighters) have when it comes to getting these officials elected. So I’d push back on your suggestion that this should be in their hands. All to often these are the groups that are caving to the FOP’s demands.

    To the larger question, I voted yes. But I’m not sure how much of an impact licensing would have. This is a systemic problem and it has gotten worse over the years although in the age of technology maybe cameras have just become a bit more prevalent. This is a cultural problem that exists in the department. It’s not just the cop who puts someone in a choke hold but his colleagues who stand by and watch it happen while doing nothing and the brass who turns a blind eye. We’re beyond the point of explaining this a way as a few bad apples.

  27. - DuPage Guy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:45 pm:

    I said yes. Details about the how matter, but if it could give another venue for citizens to bring awareness or complaints against officers outside their local jurisdictions, which are often more worried about liability than solving anything, it could be good.

  28. - Rh - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:48 pm:

    Whether a license or State Registry something needs to be available to potential employers. Certified officers move between Departments often without the ability of a department to have a good feel for past performance. The majority of Officers are good people and I think would be supportive of something that would help weed out the few that should not be officers.

  29. - Wylie Coyote - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:50 pm:

    You need a license to drive a car. Too many violations and you lose it. Sounds logical.

  30. - Pot calling kettle - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:51 pm:

    Voted yes. I’m assuming the concept is to develop a uniform standard, annual training requirements, and to prevent someone who loses their job in one town for poor performance from just moving on the the next town.

    ==It’s just another way to try and circumvent the collective bargaining rights of our members…==

    I’m a strong union person; licensing has not significantly impacted the bargaining power of teachers that I know of.

  31. - olddog - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:54 pm:

    Voted “yes.” Licensing for LEOs would have to be part of an overall upgrade in education, standards, assistance to smaller departments, etc. But it would have to be part of the upgrade. If nurses, cosmetologists, teachers and other professions can be licensed, there’s no reason why LEOs can’t be.

  32. - Huh? - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 1:56 pm:

    If the cops are claiming to be a “professional” group, then by all means, make them obtain a state issued license. Make them go through an accredited police academy, sit for an 8 hour exam, shoot for proficiency, go through a live fire excercise, defensive and high speed driving test. Then require specific training to be completed during the renewal period.

    Otherwise, they should drop the claim to being a professional organization.

  33. - PublicServant - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:02 pm:

    ===The FOP has made it very clear that this is not on the table.===

    Keep stonewalling, and see what happens.

  34. - RNUG - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:04 pm:

    I’m not sure how my LE friends might feel about it, but I voted yes. Like others, I don’t necessarily think it will make a big amount of difference, but it might eliminate a few bad people.

    My fears, like others, is it could be improperly used. It should require a high level of either peer review or a legal conviction of a crime to strip the license.

    And, like a number of other licensed professions, on top of current requirements, there should be a mandatory minimum of x hours of ongoing training every year or every other year. If you want better trained cops, there is a cost to train them.

  35. - Quibbler - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:05 pm:

    I voted “no” because, as is obvious to anyone who has watched the news over the past month, police forces operate without fear of much more severe punishments, up to and including imprisonment. They are functionally unaccountable. If they’re not afraid of going to jail or any kind of professional discipline as a result of kneeling on a man’s neck, knocking a 75-year old to the ground, or arresting a CNN reporter (all while being recorded), they is no reason to believe they’d be afraid of losing their licenses. Licensure is a check-the-box “reform” that both parties can say they agreed to and then move on, in lieu of implementing structural change that would truly challenge police power. The only “reforms” under consideration should be defunding and abolishing the police. Anything else is a PR move.

  36. - Abu Iskandr - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:05 pm:

    The Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board already exists, so a “new bureaucracy” need not be created. (

    Other states license their law enforcement officers (Here is link to Michigan,4671,7-180-24786-312836–,00.html)

  37. - Ebenezer - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:07 pm:

    Yes. I’d like to thank Catanzara for making the argument.
    ==if they force them to have licenses, now you can suspend your license and now you’re basically out of work anyway.==

    Sounds like a good start to me.

    If police are going to have the respect of their communities, there is a massive cultural change needed.

    The longer term fix is to create a police culture that expels unfit cops, rather than protects them behind a wall of silence.

  38. - Excitable Boy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:11 pm:

    - decertify the FOP -

    Decertifying the union won’t get rid of bad police behavior, the whole system needs to be redesigned.

  39. - bowwow - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:14 pm:

    The costs of licensing and additional training will be passed on to the local jurisdiction employing the officers. And, there will be a big push to put all kinds of regulations on all officers that will apply statewide. Small towns are already hard-pressed to keep officers on the payroll. What agency will license officers? State police? They can’t even keep up with FOID cards and CCW licenses. Financial and Professional Regulation has their hands full with cannabis licensing. You can take away police powers without having to license a person first.

  40. - Bruce( no not him) - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:28 pm:

    I voted yes, but it only works with testing and ongoing training. Just a “ pay your money every 5 years” won’t make any difference.

  41. - JoanP - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:30 pm:

    = Cabello . . . said the discussion takes away from dealing with public corruption within the state legislature. =

    Oh, for pete’s sake. It is, in fact, possible to deal with more than one issue at a time.

  42. - Red Ketcher - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:31 pm:

    No - already have Certification and Training Bd
    What’s Needed is Leadership and Supervision

  43. - Grimlock - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:32 pm:

    Teachers are licensed and (mostly) unionized, what’s the issue?

    There is a situation locally where an officer dismissed for assaulting a handcuffed suspect has now been hired by a nearby township. Licensing would prevent such instances, or help reduce them.

  44. - Original Rambler - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:35 pm:

    No. I’d rather see collective bargaining reigned in where this issue can be addressed. Expand the scope of duties on the ILETSB to include discipline or review of discipline. I’m just spitballing here but amending the Public Employee Labor Relations Act is where this should be addressed.

  45. - Original Rambler - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:35 pm:

    No. I’d rather see collective bargaining reigned in where this issue can be addressed. Expand the scope of duties on the ILETSB to include discipline or review of discipline. I’m just spitballing here but amending the Public Employee Labor Relations Act is where this should be addressed.

  46. - in the no - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:45 pm:

    sorry officer cabello, i musta missed that story about the reps’/senators’ frequent resort to excessive/deadly force. our hero.

  47. - Rasselas - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:50 pm:

    I voted yes, for the reasons stated by Catanzara. A way to get around the (ridiculous) provisions of the union contracts and fire bad police officers. Simple as that. (No one who has ever negotiated a union contract would say - oh, just handle this as a part of the negotiation. It will never, ever happen that way.)

  48. - Joe Bidenopolous - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 2:57 pm:

    First, I’m a licensed professional who doesn’t carry a gun and whose decisions will never deprive someone of their life, so yes, they should be licensed, especially for the “professional” reasons outlined by Huh?

    Second, I doubt you’ll find a stauncher defender of labor than me - I’m a “put it on the board, I’ll vote for it” kind of guy (*not an actual legislator). But the fact that Catanzara heads Lodge 7 tells me that Lodge 7, as a whole, is a festering waste pit. There was once a time that I would’ve been in the “not all cops” camp, but a majority elected this danger to society who has faced literally dozens of investigations during his time on the force and is currently relieved of his police powers. FOP needs to be neutered.

    Finally, Catanzara did something helpful. He provided the exact reason licensing is needed. Local electeds aren’t going to solve the problem, most of them get elected with FOP support. Police officials don’t have the gumption to confront the issue, and rank-and-file will hide the wrongdoers. If licensing is what’s needed to take horrible cops off the street because their CBA is too strong, then we need to do it. Far too often are bad cops slapped on the wrist and allowed to return or go to another department.

  49. - @misterjayem - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:11 pm:

    This article casts some light on the origins of Chicago’s Fraternal Order of Police:

    – MrJM

  50. - the Patriot - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:16 pm:

    Its not a terrible idea, but we are broke and he already uses under funding for an excuse for not doing his job. Until Raoul gets his house in order and does his job, he needs to stop pandering for programs he knows he will never do.

    When I seem him on TV blasting Mike Madigan for under funding his office so he can be effective, we can talk. Otherwise, tell us what programs you are planning to cut to pay for this.

  51. - Rich Miller - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:17 pm:

    === tell us what programs you are planning to cut===

    Licensees will likely pay for this. Up-front costs are probably fairly low since we have existing infrastructure. Maybe instead of parroting the Tribune’s red herrings you can discuss it on its merits.

  52. - My 2 cents - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:18 pm:

    So the Illinois Law Enforcement Training Standards Board (ILETSB) already “certifies” individuals who have passed a level of training (normally Academy training) required by ILETSB and have passed mandatory minimum physical requirements as well as a standardized exam at the completion of training. These “Certified” Officers are then eligible to work as Police Officers, for a unit of government that state law recognizes to have Police Officers.
    This certification, never expires, however it can be revoked (permanently) by ILETSB for numerous reasons.

    You can also be required to attend update training, specifically if you haven’t been the police for a while and are coming back. ILETSB also requires minimum annual certifications be met (normally enforced by the local agency).

    Now these certifications don’t “cost” the individual officer annually as a “license” would, but lets face it, a “license” is just another term for tax….

  53. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:32 pm:

    ===… with the obvious caveat that there are never any single magical fixes that will solve every problem…===

    Voted “Yes” in large part because of this caveat.

    For me, it’s this;

    This movement of Black Lives Matter has moved, rightly so, into a global reflection of society, institutional and systemic racism, and this need to have our global society and local community do more than try to placate moments.

    These moments are police encounters that have ended tragically with murder or what is seemingly too “usual” the two worlds we find in society and how policing is part of the divide too.

    I don’t have “any single magical fix(es) that will solve this problem, globally”, but if a form of licensing, one I can see as a true step forward, not window dressing or a weakened appeasement to get bipartisan support, I am for such a thing.

    This afternoon, Premier League “football” restarted, and the Aston Villa Sheffield United match was televised. It was played in an empty stadium, with a “Black Lives Matter” banner *in England*., where the fans would normally sit, put there by the Aston Villa club.

    The world needs a change, the world needs to change. Licensing law enforcement is a step, but don’t let political types make it a “two-step” to dance around this global movement that knows the moment is here for change.

    Voted “yes”

  54. - pool boy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:39 pm:

    Voted yes but I would like to see the final proposal. FYI, some unions negotiate license fees be paid by the employer if they are a job requirement.

  55. - Norseman - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:43 pm:

    I voted yes. The purpose of licensing is to ensure competency and prevent harm to the public. It also provides for some statewide standards for police officers to follow. Someone violates those standards, her/his license gets yanked. The union doesn’t like it because their power is diminished.

  56. - Anyone Remember - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:48 pm:

    Yes. And training should have to be completed =before= the officer can work.

    Presently they have to be trained within 6 months of hiring date.

    For part-time officers, they have 18 months to complete training.

    That sound is the wailing & gnashing of the teeth from small town chiefs, small county sheriffs, and IML’s Brad Cole over the prospect of being required to put only fully trained officers on the street.

    Oh - the waiver process should be replaced by an assessment examination.

  57. - Miso - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:49 pm:

    Voted yes.

    Can officers lose their certification for something less than a felony conviction (or a few misdemeanor convictions) in Illinois? A: No. Can citizens file a complaint against police officers in Illinois without signing an affidavit? A: No. Do police officers as a condition of employment in Illinois have to turn in officers if they are personally aware of misconduct? A: No.

    All of the above apply to judges and lawyers as a result of different, long ago scandals. All three policies should be considered for police.

  58. - Union thug - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:54 pm:

    I voted yes cause it is a good step. To quote another commenter on here, the devil is in the details.
    How will it hold them accountable? What are the requirements?
    Many states already do this and still have the issues with accountability.
    Bottom line, would be a good step in the right direction but many other parts of the issue need meaningful reform.

  59. - Denise - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 3:59 pm:

    As a professional engineer I am required to take 30 hours of continuing ed. Illinois was one of the first states to require this. Illinois is also most stringent about its licensing. It’s all about continuous training and how about fitness testing!!

  60. - CJA - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:06 pm:

    Voted “no” because the topic is too vague. If the licensing is simply to find a way to punish bad cops, that is not the way to go about it. True licencing should bring something more to the table, so I would need to see those details. it needs to represent something more than pay your $$, get your licence. And if that is the case, then maybe we need to look at how we re-license all professionals — doctors, lawyers, teachers. Until we are willing to do that, then I don’t want something that is at best empty, and at worst open for political sway.

  61. - Precinct Captain - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:09 pm:

    Yes and we should license editorial writers at major market newspapers too.

  62. - Anyone Remember - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:12 pm:

    “… how about fitness testing!!”

    If you’re talking =physical= fitness, the feds have shown it only works if the officer gets work time to exercise. Further, to deal with the issue of “what do you want (s)he to do with the gun during training” the exercise facility is often at the employer’s office. The Springfield FBI facility has a workout facility (with donated equipment).

    And the federal courts have said if you have a “physical fitness standard” it has to be designed by consultants, not the agency.

  63. - Honeybear - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:15 pm:

    Resounding Yes
    I have been appalled by the FOP in all of this and this remark on licensing totally illustrates why we need to have bad cops who lose their license off the fricking beat.
    I think it’s a brilliant strategy.
    Side note: I truly believe Police need collective bargaining and unions.
    There is so much reform that needs to be done in contracting and in the organization itself.

    I would also say that the licensing should include an independently done Psychological profile. I had to do one in seminary, why shouldn’t cops? Think of the lives we could save.

  64. - LoyalVirus - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:19 pm:

    It just makes sense to have this layer of accountability for law enforcement officers. It is ridiculous that one could be terminated for any number of bad acts but simply cross county lines or the like and get another LEO position. I don’t say this lightly - many police unions give unions a bad name.

  65. - Former Merit Comp - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:24 pm:

    Nope. Will not address the underlying problem. It would be like saying licensing gun owners will stop murders. The problem with bad cops is lack of supervision, budgets, manpower and training. The cop who killed Mr Floyd had over a dozen use of force complaints on the books. He should not have even had a job, let alone allowed on the streets.

  66. - OOO - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:24 pm:

    Licensing sounds good, but it seems like (1) window dressing and (2) a paper tiger. The fact of the matter is that organized labor has so much influence in Illinois government and politics that there’s little that can be done to address the issue of bad (insert public employee here) because the system is tilted in favor of the employee. I’m not saying that’s a bad thing, but many others are without actually saying it. Unless and until politicians are willing to exempt some topics from collective bargaining, bruise their relationships with organized labor, and strengthen management rights, that will continue.

  67. - Leslie K - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 4:51 pm:

    I voted yes, but mostly because it will make people feel better. Police already have minimum training (about 450 hrs; Chicago’s is over 950), certification, and in-service (continuing education) requirements. I don’t see licensing as much of a plus, but it’s not likely to hurt. And it could improve tracking of officers who department-hop to avoid discipline. The current database (if it is even up and running) is very limited (officers who quit with a Class 2 felony pending, I think).

    An additional thought regarding Chicago PD: there are 4 separate ‘unions’ within CPD; FOP is the largest, and most vocal, but not the only one (the other 3 are all PB&PA, not FOP). I don’t understand how FOP Lodge 7 elected that walking disaster as president; it seems like the other unions should do a little push-back.

  68. - Matt Vernau - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 5:02 pm:

    Voted No for the same reasons Oswegp Willie voted yes. This is a selection and weeding process that takes real leadership and psychological skills. You have to hire people who will be aggressive when placed in danger. Some one who will not protect himself his partner or his charge is just as much of a liability as someone who over reacts. The better person you need for this job is a different type than the better person who will not need to sleep it off in some ones parking lot.

  69. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 5:09 pm:

    - Matt Vernau -

    So… your “Yes” is to the Col. Nathan R. Jessup take?

    “You want me on that wall. You need me on that wall”

    Yeah, it didn’t work out too well for ole Col. Jessup.

    He broke the military code of conduct, ordered a Code Red, and an innocent man was killed.

    Says a lot about you, but please, talk more about the need for cops to be “strong”… whew.

    === You have to hire people who will be aggressive when placed in danger.===

    Sounds like military training.

  70. - diogenes - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 5:16 pm:

    No. it is another burden on local authorities without real benefit. better would be in independent statewide body (composed of state police, sherifs, police chiefs, line officers, union, police training board, prosecutors and public members) that would review all deaths involving law enforcement, including jail staff. Report goes to head of affected law enforcement, local prosecutor, attorney general.

  71. - Amalia - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 5:50 pm:

    standards. although the argument that it will keep track of the bad apples is redundant to current practice also might show that the problems will still exist because the massive problem is that there is horrible violence. and the police are not responsible for that.

  72. - comfortably numb - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 5:51 pm:

    Raising the aspirational and professional reality and self-image of policing seems an idea whose time has come. Police provide critical functions with more complexities than accounted for the current model, in training, supervision, promotion, and especially accountability. There should also be serious discussions about intersection with other licensed professions, such as those dealing with mental illness,substance use disorders, domestic violence etc. This is a way to try.

  73. - Huh? - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 6:37 pm:

    “This certification, never expires, however it can be revoked (permanently) by ILETSB for numerous reasons.”

    My reaction is “so what?”

    Does losing this “certification” prevent someone from working as a cop?

    As described on the website, this is a toothless organization when it come to holding police accountable for their actions.

    Blago is the perfect example of a professional organization holding one of their own accountable. Yes, we went to jail. But when he was released from prison, he was disbarred, no longer able to practice law.

    Do the same for cops.

  74. - Pundent - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 7:30 pm:

    =Sounds like military training=

    Well when you outfit the PD with military style equipment and we go from being citizens to civilians, the results are predictable. Licensing might be a good first step but there are many additional ones that will also be needed. Major crimes have steadily declined but the way we train and arm police would suggest the opposite. Something is very wrong with that.

  75. - Arock - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 7:41 pm:

    The Union contracts for all Public employees should have language changed to make it easier to get rid of employees that do not meet the standards of the job. This is not just a bad policing issue it is just as much a bad job done by the politicians that have run many of the cities that have poor and corrupt police in their employment. The politicians were quite happy with police operations when crime stats are going down and the better areas of town are kept safe and they could take credit for their constituents being protected from crime.

  76. - Arock - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 7:45 pm:

    “Legislators are essentially licensed every two years in the House and every 2-4 years in the Senate, John.” - many are reelected because of a broken system in Illinois where gerrymandering dictates the winner in many cases. The covering up of corruption in Illinois apparently leads to more corruption and more power for the Democrats.

  77. - Oswego Willy - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 7:51 pm:

    ===… for the Democrats.===

    George H Ryan?

    Stop making it partisan.

  78. - My 2 cents - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 9:27 pm:

    Two responses. YES. De-certification means you can no longer be a Police Officer in the State of Illinois.

    Also, yes you can be de-certified, regardless of if you were convicted of a felony or not. If the Officers actions are deemed erroneous enough ILETSB will de-certify and ensure that you are no longer a Police Officer in Illinois AND if other states inquire about your status in Illinois they will be notified you were de-certified.

    If the Officers department or the agency that investigated contacts ILETSB and notify’s them Officer A was terminated because of reason to de-certify, that’s it, no due process, no appeal, no nothing, that officer is DONE, minus a lawsuit and a Judge ordering their reinstatement.

  79. - Glenn - Wednesday, Jun 17, 20 @ 11:06 pm:

    Professional police should be licensed, have personally paid for professional insurance, with insurance companies having access to records of risky behaviors of licensees, and insurance rates based on predicted liabilities.

    If risky behavior prices one out of the market then seek a job you are better qualified for.

    Attorneys in private practice are required to have insurance. Why not police?

    Personal responsibility for personal decisions seems reasonable, considering the hundreds of millions of dollars taxpayers are now on the hook for by irresponsible police officer actions.

  80. - Candy Dogood - Thursday, Jun 18, 20 @ 1:03 am:

    ===Two responses. YES. De-certification means you can no longer be a Police Officer in the State of Illinois. ===

    From their website:

    Pursuant to 50 ILCS 705/6.2, all law enforcement agencies shall notify the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board (aka the Board) within 30 days of any final determination of willful violation of department or agency policy, official misconduct, or violation of law when:

    ===(1) the officer is discharged or dismissed as a result of the violation; or

    (2) the officer resigns during the course of an investigation and after the officer
    has been served noticed that he or she is under investigation that is based on the commission of a Class 2 or greater felony. This includes violations of Illinois statutes or statutes of
    other state or federal agencies when the elements of the offense are substantially similar to an Illinois criminal offense which is a Class 2 or greater felony.===

    It seems like this leaves a pretty significant gap in reporting, and it leaves out Class 3 and Class 4 felonies. Not to mention — when it comes to police investigations, maybe there’s a little pressure to keep it a Class 3 or Class 4 felony rather than bum it up to a Class 2.

    For the sake of argument, I also found a website that had a list of the Class 3 and Class 4 felonies — so remember, these are things that you can do, get caught, resign, and still be a cop in Illinois:

    Institutional vandalism when damage does not exceed $500 720-5/21-1.2 3 Felony
    Aggravated Battery 720-5/12-3.05 3 Felony
    Calculated Cannabis Conspiracy 720-550/9 3 Felony
    Look-a-Like Controlled Substance 720-570/404 3 Felony
    Criminal Abortion 720-510/6 3 Felony
    Institutional Vandalism below $500 720-5/21-1.2 3 Felony
    Aggravated Computer Tampering 720-5/17-52 3 Felony
    Aggravated Identity Theft below $300 720-5/16-30(b) 3 Felony
    Forgery 720-5/17-3 3 Felony
    Bomb Threat 720-5/26-1(a)(3) 3 Felony
    Syndicated Gambling 720-5/28-1.1 3 Felony
    Concealment of Homicidal Death 720-5/9-3.4 3 Felony
    Involuntary Manslaughter 720-5/9-3 3 Felony
    Involuntary Manslaughter & Reckless 720-5/9-3.2 3 Felony
    Reckless Homicide 720-5/9-3 3 Felony
    Official Misconduct 720-5/33-3 3 Felony
    Perjury 720-5/32-2 3 Felony
    Aggravated Stalking 720-5/12-7.4 3 Felony
    Intimidation 720-5/12-6 3 Felony
    Aggravated Unlawful Restraint 720-5/10-3.1 3 Felony
    Methamphetamine possession - less than 5 grams of methamphetamine or a substance containing methamphetamine 720-646/60 (1) 3 Felony
    Tampering with Anhydrous Ammonia Equipment 720-646/25(d)(1) 3 Felony
    Abuse or criminal neglect of a long term care facility resident;  criminal abuse or neglect of an elderly person or person with a disability 720-5/12-4.4a 3 Felony
    Criminal Fortification of a Residence or Building 720-5/19-5 3 Felony
    Custodial Sexual Misconduct 720-5/11-9.2 3 Felony
    Patronizing a Prostitute-Minor 720-5/11-18.1 3 Felony
    Sexual Misconduct With Disabled Person 720-5/11-9.5 3 Felony
    Sexual Relations Within Families 720-5/11-11 3 Felony
    Traveling to Meet Minor 720-5/11-26 3 Felony
    Theft $500 and Under 720-5/16-1 3 Felony
    A contractor who knowingly makes a false statement, material to the certification 720-5/33E-11 (b) 3 Felony
    Advocating Overthrow of Government 720-5/30-3 3 Felony
    Bid-rigging 720-5/33E-3 3 Felony
    Bribery for excuse from jury duty 720-5/32-4b 3 Felony
    Bringing into or possessing cannabis in a penal institution 720-5/31A-1.1 (2) 3 Felony
    Cannabis Plant(s) - More than 20, but not more than 50 plants 720-550/8 (c) 3 Felony
    Criminal Damage to Government Supported Property above $500-$10,000 720-5/21-1.01 3 Felony
    Delivery/manufacture cannabis over 30gm to 500gm 720-550/5 (d) 3 Felony
    False entries 720-5/33E-15 3 Felony
    False statements on vendor applications 720-5/33E-14 3 Felony
    Identity Theft valued above $300-$2,000 720-5/16-30(a) 3 Felony
    Insurance Fraud above $300 720-5/1-10.5(a) 3 Felony
    Kickbacks 720-5/33E-7 (a) 3 Felony
    Laundering of criminally derived property of a value not exceeding $10,000 720-5/29B-1 3 Felony
    Legislative misconduct 720-5/33-8 3 Felony
    Misapplication of funds 720-5/33E-16 3 Felony
    Peace officer or correctional officer; gang-related activity prohibited 720-5/33-4 3 Felony
    possess, procure, transport, store, or deliver anhydrous ammonia in an unauthorized container 720-646/25 (1.5) 3 Felony
    Possession of Cannabis over 500gm to 2,000gm (felony) 720-550/4 (e) 3 Felony
    Public contractor misconduct 720-5/33-7 3 Felony
    State benefits fraud above $300 720-5/17-6 3 Felony
    Tampering with public records 720-5/32-8 (c) 3 Felony
    Tampering With Public Records 720-5/32-8 (c) 3 Felony
    Threatening public officials;  human service providers 720-5/12-9 3 Felony
    Unlawful manipulation of a judicial sale 720-5/32-14 3 Felony
    Unlawful manufacture or delivery 720-5/24.5-10 3 Felony
    Unlawful participation 720-5/33E-17 3 Felony
    Unlawful Sale or Delivery of Firearms on the Premises of Any School 720-5/24-3.3 3 Felony
    Unlawful use of firearm projectiles. 720-5/24-2.1 3 Felony
    Unlawful Use or Possession of Weapons by Felons or Persons in the Custody of the Department of Corrections Facilities 720-5/24-1.1 3 Felony

    Possession of Cannabis over 100gm (felony) 720-550/4 (d) 4 Felony
    Chemical Breakdown Illicit Controlled Substance 720-570/401.5 4 Felony
    Unauthorized Possession Prescription Form 720-570/406.2 4 Felony
    Criminal Damage to Government Supported Property below $500 720-5/21-1.01 4 Felony
    Unlawful Sale or Delivery of Firearm 720-5/24-3 4 Felony
    Computer Fraud 720-5/17-50 4 Felony
    Financial Exploitation of Elderly/Disabled 720-5/17-56 4 Felony
    Identity Theft valued below $300 720-5/16-30(a) 4 Felony
    State benefits fraud below $300 720-5/17-6 4 Felony
    Unlawful Use of Recorded Sounds or Images 720-5/16-7 4 Felony
    Eavesdropping 720-5/14-2(a) 4 Felony
    False Fire Alarm 720-5/26-1(a)(2) 4 Felony
    False Police Report 720-5/26-1(a)(4) 4 Felony
    Looting 720-5/25-4 4 Felony
    Mob Action 720-5/25-1 4 Felony
    Sale or Delivery of Drug Paraphernalia 720-600/3 4 Felony
    Concealing or Aiding a Fugitive 720-5/31-5 4 Felony
    Obstructing Justice 720-5/31-4 4 Felony
    Tampering With Public Records 720-5/32-8 (a) 4 Felony
    Compelling a Confession or Information by Force or Threat 720-5/12-7 4 Felony
    Cyberstalking 720-5/12-7.5 4 Felony
    Hate Crime 720-5/12-7.17.1 4 Felony
    Stalking 720-5/12-7.3 4 Felony
    Aiding & Abetting Child Abduction 720-5/10-7 4 Felony
    Child Abduction 720-5/10-5 4 Felony
    Luring of a Minor 720-5/10-5.1 4 Felony
    Unlawful Restraint 720-5/10-3 4 Felony
    Aggravated Flee/Attempt to Elude Police Officer 625-5/11-204.1 4 Felony
    Leaving the Scene Personal Injury Accident 625-5/11-401 4 Felony
    Child Abandonment 720-5/12C-10 4 Felony
    Failure to Report Child Abuse or Neglect 325-5/4 4 Felony
    Draft Card Mutilation 720-5/49-1.5 4 Felony
    Possession of Burglary Tools 720-5/19-2 4 Felony
    Bigamy 720-5/11-45(a) 4 Felony
    Distribution of Harmful Material 720-5/11-21 4 Felony
    Grooming 720-5/11-25 4 Felony
    Patronizing a Prostitute 720-5/11-18 4 Felony
    Posting of identifying or graphic information on a pornographic Internet site or possessing graphic information with pornographic material 720-5/11-23 4 Felony
    Promoting Prostitution 720-5/11-14.3 4 Felony
    Sexual Conduct or Contact with an Animal 720-5/12-35 4 Felony
    Sex Offender - Prohibited Zone 720-5/11-9.3 4 Felony
    Abuse of a corpse - removes or carries away a corpse and is not authorized by law to do so 720-5/12-20.6 (2) 4 Felony
    Accepting a Bribe 720-5/29-2 4 Felony
    Adoption compensation prohibited 720-5/12C-70 4 Felony
    Aggravated criminal housing management 720-5/12-5.1a 4 Felony
    Aggravated Unlawful Use of Weapon 720-5/24-1.6 4 Felony
    Boarding or attempting to board an aircraft with weapon 720-5/29D-35.1 4 Felony
    Bribery of inspector employed by contractor 720-5/33E-8 4 Felony
    Bringing into or possessing alcoholic liquor in a penal institution 720-5/31A-1.1 (1) 4 Felony
    Cannabis Plant(s) - More than 5, but not more than 20 plants 720-550/8 (b) 4 Felony
    Change orders 720-5/33E-9 4 Felony
    Common carrier recklessness 720-5/12-5.5 4 Felony
    Communicating with jurors and witnesses 720-5/32-4 4 Felony
    Criminal Sexual Abuse 720-5/11-1.50 (1) (2) 4 Felony
    Delivery/manufacture cannabis over 10gm to 30gm 720-550/5 (c) 4 Felony
    Failure to report the death or disappearance of a child under 13 years of ag 720-5/10-10 4 Felony
    False report of theft and other losses 720-5/26-1.1 4 Felony
    Fraudulent driver’s license or permit 625-5/6-301.2 4 Felony
    Interference with contract submission and award by public official 720-5/33E-6 4 Felony
    Kickbacks 720-5/33E-7 (b) 4 Felony
    Making false application or affidavit–Perjury 625-5/6-302 4 Felony
    Manufacture, sale or transfer of bullets or shells represented to be armor piercing bullets, dragon’s breath shotgun shells, bolo shells, or flechette shells 720-5/24-2.2 4 Felony
    Misprision of treason 720-5/30-2 4 Felony
    Non-consensual dissemination of private sexual images. 720-5/11-23.5 4 Felony
    Offenses relating to possession of titles and registration 625-5/4-104 (1-2)(a) 4 Felony
    Offering a bribe 720-5/29-1 (a) 4 Felony
    Performance of Unauthorized Acts 720-5/32-6 4 Felony
    Permitting unlawful use of a building 720-570/406.1 4 Felony
    Possession and sale of caustic and noxious substances 720-5/12-37 4 Felony
    Preservation of evidence 720-5/33-5 4 Felony
    Reckless discharge of a firearm 720-5/24-1.5 4 Felony
    Sexual conduct or sexual contact with an animal 720-5/12-35 4 Felony
    Subornation of perjury 720-5/32-3 4 Felony
    Tampering with public records 720-5/32-8 (a) 4 Felony
    Theft of Lost or Mislaid Property - the value exceeds $10,000 720-5/16-2 4 Felony
    Unauthorized possession of prescription form 720-570/406.2 4 Felony
    Unlawful possession of handguns 720-5/24-3.1 4 Felony
    Unlawful sale of burglary tools 720-5/19-2.5 4 Felony
    Unlawful sale of firearms by liquor licensee 720-5/24-3.4 4 Felony
    Unlawful stringing of bids 720-5/33E-18 4 Felony
    Unlawful use of a firearm in the shape of a wireless telephone 720-5/24-3.6 4 Felony

  81. - Commisar Gritty - Thursday, Jun 18, 20 @ 9:23 am:

    Cabbello is the type of guy who would go yell at a tornado for daring to take the headlines away from ethics investigations.

    Dude, we got bigger fish to fry here. Your attempt at a smokescreen is hilariously and ironically transparent

  82. - Glenn - Thursday, Jun 18, 20 @ 10:51 am:

    “False Police Report 720-5/26-1(a)(4) 4 Felony”

    So it’s better to lie about the commission of a class 1 felony, effectively substituting a class 4 felony for a class 1 felony so as to remain a police officer in good standing.

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