Former Lyons officer gets 5 years for extorting suspects - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Former Lyons officer gets 5 years for extorting suspects

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CHICAGO (Sun-Times Media Wire) -

A former west suburban police officer was sentenced to five years in federal prison Monday for extorting more than $48,000 from targets of criminal investigations in 2013, according to federal prosecutors.

Jimmy Rodgers, 44 of Chicago, was sentenced after pleading guilty to extortion in May, according to the U.S. State’s Attorney’s office.

The 14-year Lyons Police Department veteran was assigned to investigate the sale of contraband and counterfeit cigarettes, a statement from prosecutors said. Instead, he set up six fake transactions with criminals—detaining them, handcuffing them, and stealing their goods and money.

The FBI discovered Rodgers’ ruse when a source reported the police officer had not arrested any targets or recorded any transactions, prosecutors said. Rodgers also began paying sources cash from the proceeds of transactions instead of checks from the Lyons Police Department.

Rodgers was fined $48,980 and ordered to begin serving his sentence on Nov. 7, the statement said.

“The temptation for police officers to extort illegal operations is great. People need to know they will go to jail for this conduct,” U.S. District Judge Thomas Durkin said in the statement.

“The sentence here should serve as a reminder that the penalty for shaking people down is not a slap on the wrist.”

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