Former Algonquin, Fox Lake police chief Russell Laine dies

  • In 2016, the village of Fox Lake hired Russell Laine, retired Algonquin police chief, to clean up the Fox Lake Police Department after the Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz scandal.

    In 2016, the village of Fox Lake hired Russell Laine, retired Algonquin police chief, to clean up the Fox Lake Police Department after the Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz scandal. Paul Valade | Staff Photographer, 2017

Daily Herald report
Updated 8/24/2021 11:50 PM

Russell Laine, police chief in Algonquin for nearly 30 years as well as in Bartlett and Fox Lake, has died.

The Algonquin Police Department announced his death Tuesday in a social media post.


After he retired from the Algonquin department in 2014, Laine was hired by Fox Lake in 2016 to clean up its police department in the wake of the embezzlement and suicide scandal involving Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz. Laine retired from that post in June 2017.

"Chief Laine has spent four decades serving alongside police officers and working to make communities safer," Fox Lake Mayor Donnie Schmit said in 2017. "For that, we are indebted to him and are grateful for his service."

His started his police career in 1976 with the Streamwood Police Department, according to the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, then went to the Bartlett department until 1982, serving as an acting chief in 1981. He became chief in Edgerton, Wisconsin, until he took the role in Algonquin.

In 1991, he earned his law degree from John Marshall Law School in Chicago.

Laine also served as the president of the McHenry County Chiefs of Police Association, the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police and the International Association of Chiefs of Police.

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"I always tell Russ that wisdom is one of his greatest attributes," Ed Wojcicki, executive director of the Illinois police chiefs association, is quoted as saying in the group's May magazine. "He's always available to help, he thinks before he speaks, and his advice is always spot-on."

The magazine included a salute to Laine because he had stepped down as the group's parliamentarian after nearly two decades.

In 2007, he earned the Law Enforcement Recognition award from the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence, and he helped introduce the Law Enforcement Torch Run for Special Olympics in Algonquin and McHenry County. He also lectured both nationally and internationally on topics such as police ethics.

Buffalo Grove Police Chief Steven Casstevens, in an essay in the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police magazine, thanked Laine "for his input in not only my career as a professional law enforcement leader, but, more importantly, as an extraordinary human being who has impacted the lives of men, women, cops, emerging leaders, and perhaps in his most beloved endeavor, his own family and his family of the Special Olympians."

Laine was also a veteran of the Vietnam War, serving as an Army infantry medic. He received the Combat Medics Badge, a Purple Heart and three Bronze Stars for Valor.

The Algonquin Police Department said there will be a celebration of Laine's life at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 18, at the Light of Christ Lutheran Church, 1700 Longmeadow Parkway in Algonquin.

For those unable to attend, the service will be livestreamed on the Light of Christ Facebook page.

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