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Chicago Officer Found Not Guilty of Restraining Teenager Accused of Bike Theft

Chicago Officer [Photo: Patch]
Chicago Officer [Photo: Patch]

Michael Vitellaro was found not guilty of restraining a teenager by kneeling on his back. Reports say the Chicago officer was caught on video restraining the teenager who he believed had stolen his son’s bike.

Chicago Officer Restrains Teenager [Photo: Chicago Sun-Times]

Chicago Officer Restrains Teenager [Photo: Chicago Sun-Times]

Reports say Michael Vitellaro, 49, learned that his son’s bike was stolen at the local library and thereafter seen at a nearby Starbucks. The Chicago officer who was off-duty at that time then drove his son to the location and found the bike on the sidewalk.

An article in CNN states that when the Chicago officer saw a teenager approach his son’s bike, he went and grabbed the boy, pinning him down to the ground. Reportedly, Vitellaro restrained the teenager by kneeling on his back.

However, video footage from Starbucks and other businesses nearby revealed that the teenager was not the person who had stolen the bike of the Chicago officer’s son. The teenager was then seen crying as he walked away from Vitellaro, who followed him still.

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Chicago Officer Found Not Guilty

Nonetheless, according to Stefanski, during a bench trial, the Chicago officer was acquitted and found not guilty of felony official misconduct and aggravated assault. However, attorneys Bhavani Raveendran, Javier Rodriguez, Jr., and Antonio Romanucci, who represent the teenager, vowed that Vitellaro will not escape justice in the civil courts.

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