A Skokie police officer charged with shoving a woman face-first into a cell bench has resigned rather than face possible firing, village officials announced today.
Skokie officials had told Michael Hart last week they would seek to fire him, and his resignation took effect today, according to a news release from the village. In late October, Cook County prosecutors charged Hart with aggravated battery and official misconduct.
Mayor George Van Dusen said in the news release that village officials expect officers to treat people with “the utmost professionalism.”
“When officers fall short of that expectation, it is our responsibility to take proper action, as the village has done in this case,” he said.
In an episode caught on video in March, Hart shoved Cassandra Feuerstein from behind into a police station cell after the officer became irate that she wouldn’t look into the camera for a booking photo following a drunken driving arrest, prosecutors said. Feuerstein, of Chicago, fell and hit her face on the bench, breaking her eye socket and loosening teeth, according to prosecutors.
Feuerstein, who pleaded guilty to drunken driving, is suing the village and Hart.