On December 26th, 2015, a police officer responded to a call of a domestic disturbance on the West Side. That night, 55-year-old Bettie Jones and 19-year-old Northern Illinois University student Quintonio LeGrier were fatally shot by officer Robert Rialmo.
Rialmo said he discharged his weapon in self-defense. But according to a recent Civilian Office of Police Accountability report, there was no evidence investigators found that would support Rialmo’s story that he was prompted to shoot when LeGrier swung a bat while running at him.
Rialmo sued LeGrier’s family as well as the city, citing emotional trauma and improper training. During the incident aftermath, Rialmo was taken off the street and assigned desk duty. According to city payroll records, he continued to collect his $84,054.00 salary.
Well now Rialmo is in trouble again. But this time for an off-duty incident.
On December 17th, 2017, Rialmo was at Moretti’s Ristorante and Pizzeria at 6727 N Olmstead Ave in the Edison Park neighborhood. During that evening, Rialmo allegedly punched two other men in the face.
He then allegedly took a jacket that belonged to one of the victims.
Last week, he turned himself in and was charged with two misdemeanors, one for battery and one for theft.
Rialmo has started a GoFundMe to help pay for his attorney fees for the two misdemeanors. That page describes Rialmo’s account of the evening of the bar fight:
“Officer Robert Rialmo was in a bar with friends when a couple of drunks tried to take his coat. When Officer Rialmo pulled his coat back from one of the men who had grabbed it away from him, the drunk pulled his arm back and made a fist to take a swing at Officer Rialmo. Officer Rialmo, a former Marine, defended himself and pushed the offender away, then the offenders friend grabbed Officer Rialmo, but Officer Rialmo struck the second man one time knocking him out. Then the first man got to his feet to continue the attack on Officer Rialmo, but Rialmo struck him to prevent him from continuing the attack. When the police arrived both drunks rejected any medical attention, and neither of them wanted to talk to the police. Officer Rialmo didn’t want to add to their problems, so he also declined to press charges. So what happened next? Three weeks later the City of Chicago, and its agency the “Civilian Office of Police Accountability” (COPA), tried to get the States Attorney to bring felony charges against Officer Rialmo. When the States Attorney decides there is no case, COPA brings the drunks down to the courthouse and has them sign misdemeanor complaint of battery and theft (i.e. stealing his own coat!). So now Officer Robert Rialmo has to defend himself against these false charges which were brought for political reasons to try to tarnish his reputation and get him fired from his job, simply because he wouldn’t lay down and let the city throw him under the bus in the LeGrier shooting case.”
As of this writing, 110 people have donated $6,135 out of the $50,000 goal.
Rialmo’s next court date is scheduled for March 1st.