Ex-South Beloit mayor, police chief and officer plead not guilty in arrest video case
By Jim Hagerty
A former South Beloit mayor, police chief and officer pleaded not guilty Wednesday, May 11, to criminal charges stemming from their alleged roles in a controversial arrest of a woman three years ago.
The incident was caught on video, shot inside the booking room of the South Beloit Police Department.
In the clip, former Police Sgt. Brad McCaslin uses a stun gun on the neck of the handcuffed woman.
Former Police Chief Tom Fearn is also seen in the video. After McCaslin is shown using the Taser, Fearn is shown grabbing the woman by the neck and pinning her down on a bench while another officer stands by.
McCaslin has been charged with insurance fraud, misconduct, aggravated battery, armed violence and theft. Fearn faces charges of aggravated battery and official misconduct.
Both face up to 30 years in prison if convicted.
For his alleged role, ex-Mayor Randy Kirichkow was charged with misconduct and obstruction of justice. Prosecutors believe Kirichkow withheld evidence in the case. If convicted, the former mayor could face up to 10 years behind bars.
McCaslin has been the most visible in the case since he threatened to sue the city of South Beloit last year over an administrative leave dispute. In that case, McCaslin had possession of the arrest video and surrendered it in exchange for an out-of-court settlement worth $70,000.
The clip surfaced in April 2011 when South Beloit officials were required to release it to the Rockford Register Star under the Freedom of Information Act.
McCaslin, Fearn and Kirichkow have posted bond.
Meantime, the handcuffed woman in the video, Veronica McIntyre, has filed a $300,000 lawsuit against the City of South Beloit and three officers.
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