Midlothian officer Steven G. Zamiar faces excessive force charges

December 4, 2013 (MIDLOTHIAN, Ill.)

The motto of the Midlothian Village Police Department is "duty, community, integrity." On Wednesday, a federal grand jury has issued an indictment against police official Steven Zamiar that accuses him of violating that mission.

Zamiar is charged in two separate suspect beatings. He was Midlothian's deputy chief during one of them, and a detective sergeant for the other. The charges are unreasonable force by law enforcement, and if convicted, carry hefty prison sentences.

The 46-year-old Zamiar had worked on the police department in Midlothian for more than 13 years.

According to federal authorities, the two counts against Zamiar involve beatings that occurred in 2010 and in 2011.

Both charges involve allegations of unreasonable force and bodily injury. Law enforcement sources say one case involved teenage burglary suspects and the other case involved use of a dangerous weapon, when he allegedly used his police baton to subdue a suspect outside a tavern.

Federal prosecutors at the Dirksen building announced the indictment Wednesday. Each count carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Zamiar has been off the job with pay since the grand jury investigation became known in September. He has been an active member of the police community. A picture of Zamiar is posted on a website aimed at raising funds to fight childhood cancer.

Arraignment has just been set for the veteran Midlothian cop; he will be in federal court next Thursday morning. Until then, he's out on $10,000 signature bond.

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