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updated: 6/27/2013 4:17 PM

Des Plaines cop again charged with domestic battery

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  • Matthew Thomas (formerly Matthew Hicks)

      Matthew Thomas (formerly Matthew Hicks)

 
 

Nearly a year after being acquitted of domestic battery charges by a McHenry County court, Des Plaines Police Sgt. Matthew R. Thomas, formerly Matthew Hicks, has been charged once again with domestic battery, authorities said.

The latest charges stem from a June 17 incident when Huntley police were called to Thomas' new home in the 10000 block of Cambria Court. A family member living at that residence made the 9-1-1 call at about 9:34 p.m.

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"It was an altercation that occurred between his wife and himself," Huntley Police Department Deputy Chief Michael Klunk said. "It was somebody else who called. The officers believed that under the statute there was probable cause to make the arrest."

Klunk said police have responded to numerous calls involving Thomas over the years, most of them related to domestic disturbance.

Thomas, 48, was charged with two counts of Class A misdemeanor domestic battery with intent to do bodily harm and provoking physical contact. His bond was set at $2,000 and he posted $228 to be released June 18. His next court date to enter a plea is set for 9 a.m. July 26 before Judge Charles Weech at the McHenry County courthouse, according to the court website.

Thomas' attorney with the Woodstock law firm of Botto Gilbert Gehris Lancaster could not be reached for comment Thursday.

Thomas petitioned to change his name from Matthew Hicks on July 30, 2012, according to court records.

Thomas, an 18-year Des Plaines Police Department employee, has been on disability leave since a 2009 automobile accident. The city paid him $125,000 to retire upon turning 50 years old on Dec. 20, 2014, and drop all claims of wrongful discharge against the city, including an employment discrimination complaint, according to a 10-page settlement agreement.

"He doesn't draw benefits or a paycheck," Des Plaines Police Chief William Kushner said.

Thomas filed a lawsuit against the city last November claiming he is still owed $14,000 as part of that deal.

Thomas originally was suspended with pay by the department after he was arrested in April 2010 and charged with domestic battery. In August 2010, he was suspended without pay.

Thomas was accused of striking his wife, pulling her hair, and preventing her from calling police on April 18, 2010, at their Huntley home. He was found not guilty on all counts.

In April 2011, following the settlement agreement with the city, Des Plaines police dropped seven internal misconduct charges against Thomas.

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