Kicking the Pigeon #5: April 30, 2003

On April 30, 2003—two days after her second encounter with the police—Bond and her boyfriend Billie Johnson went downstairs at about 11:30 p.m. They were going to the store to get some wine. As they came out of the stairwell into the elevator corridor in the lobby, they encountered Officers Stegmiller and Savickas. Stegmiller grabbed Bond by the arm.

“Where are you going?” he demanded.

“To the store.”

She had her keys in her hand.

“Give me your keys,” he said. “Give me your goddamn keys.”

“I’m not going to give you my keys,” she protested. “I’m not going through that again.”

She shifted her keys from one hand to the other and put them in her pocket. Stegmiller grabbed her around the throat and pushed her up against the elevator door.

“I’ll beat your motherfucking ass.”

“Somebody please help me,” she called out. “Please help me.”

Savickas stood by, while Stegmiller choked Bond. When Johnson appealed to him to intervene, Savickas gave him a hard push in the chest.

Only when other residents came on the scene did Stegmiller release Bond and tell her, “Get the fuck out of here.”

“I was crying, I was angry. I was hysterical,” Bond recalled. “I told my old man, ‘I’m so tired. I’m tired of this.’”

She and Johnson went directly to the Office of Professional Standards in the IIT building at 35th and State. Although OPS is open 24 hours a day, security personnel in the lobby of the building would not let her go up to the office. She left and went to the administrative headquarters of the Chicago Police Department at 35th and Michigan. The officers at the desk were not welcoming. They threatened to put Bond and Johnson in lockup. In the end, they took down her name and address. She then went to a store on the corner of 37th and State and attempted to call OPS, but the phone in the store was dead.

It was raining hard. Bond and Johnson returned to the building. The police were still there. They slipped in. He went to her apartment on the eighth floor. She went upstairs to thank the neighbors whose presence had stopped Stegmiller’s assault on her. In a vacant apartment on the fifteenth floor, she saw Seinitz—“Macintosh.” He didn’t see her. She fled the building. Again, she attempted to go to OPS, and again she was barred by security. She returned to 3651-53 South Federal and waited outside in the rain and darkness for about half an hour until the police left the building. Then she climbed the stairs to her home.

* * * *

The basis for this narrative is a series of interviews with Diane Bond, beginning on the day after the alleged incident, May 1, 2003, and continuing to the present; an interview with Billie Johnson; and the plaintiff’s statement of facts in Bond v. Chicago Police Officers Utreras, et al.

Officers Robert Stegmiller and Christ Savickas deny having any contact with Ms. Bond on the date alleged.

To be continued…