Pregnant woman says police used stun gun on her

June 5, 2012 10:00:00 PM PDT
A pregnant woman said Chicago police officers used a stun gun on her during a dispute in a South Side parking lot.

Tiffany Rent, 30, said she was sitting in her car late Wednesday night at a Walgreen's waiting for her boyfriend Joseph Hobbs when Chicago police ticketed her for parking in a spot for people with disabilities.

"When I came out they were writing her a ticket," Hobbs said. "And she couldn't understand why she was getting a ticket. She ripped the ticket and got back into the car."

"I got scared and I closed the door," Rent said. "I didn't hit him, I didn't harm him or anything. He tasered me through the window."

Rent said when Hobbs tried to intervene he was arrested and suffered a dislocated elbow.

Both Rent and Hobbs were charged with misdemeanor counts of resisting arrest and simple assault.

Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said it is sometimes hard to know if a woman is pregnant.

On Wednesday afternoon, Rent underwent further medical checks at the UIC Medical Center.

"This is excessive," said Keenan J. Saulter, Rent's attorney. "There is never a situation where an officer should stick his arm into a vehicle someone is sitting there and taser a woman. She is no threat. There's absolutely no cause for that, and a pregnant woman at that."

"I ran to the other side of the car, with my hands up, 'Stop, stop stop, she's pregnant, don't hurt her,'" said Hobbs.

John Muldoon said he is representing another pregnant woman who was stun-gunned by Chicago police while in custody May 9. He said his client, Charday Wilkins, was three months pregnant and lost her baby.

"Maybe there should be some new policies on physical violence towards women," Muldoon said.

Walgreens said it has video of the incident which has been turned over to police.

The investigation is being taken over by the Independent Police Review Authority because a firearm was used.


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