Chicago police union suspends its ex-president for 3 years

Updated 10/8/2020 11:55 AM

CHICAGO -- The former president of Chicago's largest police union has been suspended from the organization for three years after his successor accused him of leaving a camera in his office and not disclosing it.

Kevin Graham's suspension was confirmed Wednesday night by John Catanzara, the current president of the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 7.


Graham, who was ousted by Catanzara as the union's leader in May by rank-and-file Chicago Police Department officers who voted in a runoff election, denied any wrongdoing. He said he plans to appeal his suspension.

Catanzara had already tried to have Graham removed from the union's board in June after the camera was discovered in his office at the union's Chicago headquarters.

Graham said Wednesday night that the camera was installed after he noticed things missing from his desk, and that it was linked to the rest of the building's security. He said he never had access to its recordings during or after his three years as the union's president.

'I never had any control over it, never had access to it,' Graham told the Chicago Sun-Times, adding that his suspension is all about 'politics.'

Catanzara, who's known for his outspoken public criticism of anyone opposing him, including Graham and Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, said he's glad the camera saga is over.

'Some people just don't take losing very well because they're losing grip on control that they've had over this lodge for a long time,' Catanzara told the Chicago Tribune. 'There's new sheriffs in town and we're running this lodge more black and white than ever before.'

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