Waukegan Police Officer Charged with Official Misconduct and Battery to a Civilian

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Lake County State's Attorneys Office


January 3, 2024


For Immediate Release
Contact: Sara Avalos
(224) 374-2376

Waukegan Police Officer Charged with Official Misconduct and Battery to a Civilian

(Lake County, IL) The Lake County State’s Attorney Office has charged Waukegan Police Officer Richard Tabisz with felony official misconduct and misdemeanor battery to a civilian after the officer threw down the civilian while he was handcuffed and cooperating on December 14, 2023.

Waukegan police command staff presented the evidence, including several body camera recordings, to the States Attorney’s Office on December 15, 2023.

Lake County State’s Attorney Rinehart stated after the charges were issued, “the Waukegan Police Department acted swiftly and appropriately with respect to presenting the evidence to our office. It is important to point out that there were up to seven officers on the scene and that the civilian was cooperative and had been in custody for several minutes before Tabisz arrived as a transport officer. The situation was completely under control. Tabisz was not the arresting officer and threw the handcuffed civilian to the ground in the presence of several officers. Besides Tabisz, other officers on the scene acted very professionally throughout the encounter. We will hold individuals accountable for breaking the law regardless of their profession. I want to thank Chief Navarro and Mayor Ann Taylor for their swift actions in this matter.”

The charges against Tabisz are similar to charges against former officer Dante Salinas who was charged in 2022 with Official Misconduct and Aggravated Battery / Great Bodily Harm from a 2019 incident in which he broke a civilian’s eye socket.

Rinehart also commented, “This incident was clearly captured on police body camera. While Waukegan has used body cameras since 2016, it is a great thing for our communities and police departments that agencies of any size in Illinois have been recently mandated to use body cameras by 2025, due to the SAFE-T Act.”

The State’s Attorney’s Office has begun an immediate review of all pending cases involving Tabisz in light of these charges.

Tabisz will appear in Courtroom T-110 on January 17, 2024, at 9AM for First Appearance Court.


Lake County State's Attorney's Office
18 N. County Street
Waukegan, IL 60085  
Phone: (847) 377-3000