A Roselle woman who suffered a carjacking at the hands of bank robber Robert Maday has filed suit in Cook County Circuit Court naming the county, the state's attorney and the two officers who allowed him to escape as co-defendants.
The six-count suit, filed by Domenica Saverino, charges negligence by Cook County and the Cook County state's attorney's office and cites reports that "determined that there were violations of office policies that govern the transport of prisoners." It adds that state's attorney's investigators Nicholas Argentine and Joseph Fallon were suspended and fired for what an internal investigation called "an inexcusable and unacceptable inattention to duty."
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Maday escaped from the officers a year ago today, on Sept. 17, 2009, while being transported from the Stateville Correctional Center near Joliet to the Rolling Meadows courthouse for a hearing. He stole their clothes and guns and eluded capture for more than a day.
The suit charges that the car Argentine and Fallon were using to transport the shackled Maday "was not equipped with a secure cage that divides the prisoner from the driver" and that they "did not follow regular prisoner transport protocol ... as neither man sat in the back seat of the car along with Maday." It also charged that Fallon had health problems "which made (him) unable to properly carry out his functions in the transport of prisoners."
Maday carjacked Saverino's vehicle as she arrived for work the next morning in Hoffman Estates. He was apprehended later in the day after crashing the car, a 2004 Volkswagen Jetta, in a police chase in West Chicago. According to the suit, he pointed a gun at Saverino's head to force her to get out of the car, although Saverino said in the days after the event that Maday had shown her the gun and not drawn it.
Saverino's attorney, Martin Dolan, said that there was actually a series of events in the carjacking, and that Maday first displayed the gun, then pointed it at her.
The suit said Saverino "suffered extensive and lasting emotional trauma and post-traumatic stress" as a result. Maday pleaded guilty to the carjacking earlier this year.
The suit accuses Argentine and Fallon of negligence and the county and the state's attorney's office with willful and wanton conduct. Maday was is accused of assault, as well as intentional and negligent infliction of emotional distress. The suit seeks damages on all counts.
The state's attorney's office declined to comment, and Fallon and Argentine could not be reached.
Maday remains held in federal custody.