Two Glendale Heights police officers, identical twin sisters, are on paid leave while the off-duty shooting of one of them during a party in their Wayne home is investigated.
A third woman, Maureen A. Manos, whom both officers described in legal records as their girlfriend, appeared in court Tuesday to face a felony charge of reckless discharge of a firearm.
The 47-year-old Carol Stream woman is accused of shooting Officer Jennifer Marcellis in the upper right arm Jan. 30 after a lover's quarrel ensued between the two in the home the victim shared with her sister, Janelle.
The 31-year-old officers joined the Glendale Heights police force in 2001. Jennifer Marcellis was not seriously injured in the shooting, but remained hospitalized until Jan. 31 so doctors could replace a damaged artery in her arm with one from her right leg, according to court records.
DuPage State's Attorney Joseph Birkett said the gun used in the shooting was not a service weapon. He confirmed both officers were placed on paid administrative leave as the investigation continues.
"Their conduct and explanation of what occurred are being closely reviewed and scrutinized," said Birkett, who declined to provide specifics.
Detectives with the DuPage County Major Crimes Task Force were called in to investigate the shooting, which occurred in the sisters' home during a gathering of more than a dozen guests, law enforcement sources said.
They said the group had attended a retirement party hours earlier for a high-ranking member of the DuPage Metropolitan Enforcement Group. The dispute ensued after Manos became upset with sexual activity occurring in a vehicle outside of the party, the sources said.
Janelle Marcellis called 911 at 2:45 a.m. Jan. 30 to report her sister, Jennifer, had been shot. The sisters sought protective orders on Feb. 3 barring Manos from having contact with them.
"We got into an argument, and Maureen pulled out a gun and shot me in my right arm," Jennifer Marcellis wrote in the Feb. 3 court record. "I need this order of protection because I do not want Maureen to have any contact with me at all."
Janelle Marcellis, in her protective order, stated, "I told Maureen not to come over because of prior problems she had with my sister."
Both sisters were present Tuesday to observe Manos' brief court appearance before DuPage Circuit Judge Perry Thompson. Manos, who has pleaded innocent, is due back in court again next month.
Neither Wayne Police Chief Dan Callahan nor Glendale Heights Police Chief Michael Marron returned repeated phone messages left with them and their sergeants. A Daily Herald Freedom of Information Act request for a copy of the police report also was denied because disclosure could "obstruct an ongoing criminal investigation," according to the village of Wayne's denial response.
Wheaton attorney Timothy Martin, who represents Manos, said she maintains her innocence. Martin characterized the incident as an accident. He said the gun, which did not belong to his client, discharged while lying on its side on a kitchen counter. He said prosecutors have not yet given him the police reports.
"I fully expect the facts will bear out in court that this was an accidental shooting," Martin said. "She did not mean to discharge the weapon."
Manos, a mental health technician, is free on a $50,000 bond. Her only criminal history is for a 2005 drunken-driving arrest, which later was reduced to reckless driving, as part of a plea deal.