Officer appears in court in bicycle death

May 26, 2009 3:23:38 PM PDT
The case was continued Tuesday for a Chicago cop charged in a hit-and-run crash that killed a 13-year-old boy on his bike.The family of a 13-year-old Chicago boy who was struck and killed on his bicycle last Friday got a chance to see the man charged in the crash in court Tuesday.

Chicago police officer Richard Bolling remains behind bars. He is accused of driving drunk, hitting Trenton Booker, and then leaving the scene.

The Bookers say they are a strong family, but they have been shaken by Trenton's death. They say the officer accused in the deadly hit-and-run must be suffering as well, but they say he is receiving preferential treatment, which makes this process that much harder for them.

"We have to do what we have to do for Trenton. It's all about my son right here," said Terrence Booker, father.

That's why Terrence Booker and his family got to court at 7:45 Tuesday morning to make sure they didn't miss a hearing for Richard Bolling.

The Chicago officer is charged with driving drunk and killing 13-year old Trenton Booker. On Sunday, the Booker family arrived for Bolling's bond hearing scheduled for noon, only to find out it happened an hour earlier.

So, Tuesday, the Bookers waited more than four hours to see him in court.

"I just wanted him to know that my son has family and we love him so, it was worth it," said Terrence Booker.

Witnesses report seeing Bolling at a Hyde Park bar before the early morning hit-and-run accident that killed Booker near the boy's South Side home.

"My whole family is just destroyed. We love Trenton and we miss him, and to think he died a horrible death has affected my family," said Deborah Upton, grandmother.

Bolling was arrested shortly after the 1:30 a.m. accident, but wasn't given a breathalyzer until four hours later. His blood-alcohol level was point .079, just under the legal limit.

Tuesday, Mayor Daley responded to questions about whether Bolling received preferential treatment.

"I know the superintendent will be looking in to that as quickly as possible," said Mayor Daley. "We have 14,000 police officers and he's just one of the 14."

Bolling is the second Chicago police officer accused in a deadly, alcohol-related hit-and-run accident. In April, Joseph Frugoli was charged with killing two people when his car slammed into theirs on the Dan Ryan. Both officers have been stripped of their police powers.

"Unfortunately, we have three dead people as a result of people drinking and driving, so I think that sends a message to all of us, don't drink and drive," said John Dillon, assistant state's attorney.

At Tuesday's brief hearing, Bolling's bond was continued at $2 million. An attorney for Bolling says his family has been unable to come up with the necessary 10 percent to post bail. His next court hearing is June 1. That's also the date of Trenton's funeral.


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