A 13-year-old Chicago boy, who allegedly hit a Chicago police officer with a snowball near the boy’s elementary school and was questioned then locked up, says he’s innocent. The police investigation claims he is guilty, according to a Chicago Tribune report on Friday.
The issue is not necessarily whether or not the boy hit the officer with the snowball, however. In these times, the issue has become more politically correct, as to whether the officer did the right thing in detaining the boy for the alleged crime.
The issue is that the authorities say that the boy could have caused a dangerous - if not tragic - situation by hitting the officer while he was driving. The officer says he was hit in the arm – verified by a school dean. The boy says he was with a group of some 15 other persons and he was singled out because he wears dread locks. The boy says someone else threw the snowball, but he doesn’t know who. It has also been said that the snowball - which the boy says he didn't throw - hit the door of the police car and not the officer.
Because of the alleged offense of throwing a snowball and because it’s the boy's first offense, the prosecutors are not pressing charges and are telling the boy he does not need to appear in court this coming week.
The boy’s mother – as well as the boy – is concerned that the incident will cause the boy to not be accepted into Whitney Young High School next year.
Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy’s office said that the incident could have been dangerous since the officer was driving when he got hit. However, the office said that the incident could have been handled differently – other than the lengthy questioning and detainment of the youth.
The officer who was involved with the incident is a nine-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department.
The incident occurred near George Leland Elementary School which is located at 5221 West Congress Parkway on Chicago’s West Side. Officers are assigned near schools in Safe Passage Zones, before and after school.
The boy was not identified due to his age.