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(Above) Police respond to a shooting at the CTA station at State Street & Grand Avenue on February 28. (Click on image to view larger version.)

6-Mar-20 – The Chicago police officer who shot an unarmed man at the Grand Red Line station on February 28 was charged with assaulting a McDonald’s restaurant worker in 2015, less than two years before the city hired her.

Melvina Bogard

Police arrested Melvina Bogard (left) at the fast food restaurant, 1951 East 95th Street, at 2:27 a.m. on December 28, 2015. A 19-year-old McDonald’s worker told police that Bogard got out of her car in the drive-thru lane, pounded on the drive-thru window with her fist, and “shouted threats of bodily harm” toward the employee.

Prosecutors charged Bogard with misdemeanor assault, but the charge was dropped on January 15, 2016, when the victim failed to appear at the initial court date, according to court records.

Bogard, who was 27 years old at the time, is listed as a “student” on the arrest report.

Both her and her partner at the time of the February 28 shooting, Bernard Butler, have been stripped of their police powers while the incident is investigated by Chicago Police Department, Civilian Office of Police Accountability, and FBI.

Shortly after 4:00 p.m. on February 28, the two transit officers, who have been on the force since 2017, tried to stop 33-year-old Ariel Roman at the Grand station after they allegedly saw him pass between two train cars in violation of city ordinance.

A CTA passenger, Michael McDunnah, posted two widely-shared videos of Bogard and Butler struggling with Roman near the subway platform. Roman was critically wounded after being shot in the abdomen and buttocks.

(Right) Ariel Roman reacts after being pepper sprayed and Tasered by police officers at the Grand CTA station on February 28. A video of the incident shows Roman stumbling forward, then being shot by the officer at left.

Video by Michael McDunnah

The officers were treated at Rush University Medical Center for injuries they received during the incident. Bogard suffered “lacerations to both hands and a swollen bloody lip,” according to the police report, while Butler’s injuries are listed as “blunt trauma” and “lacerations to his left and right hands, a bruise to his nose, and swelling to the right knee.”

A search of the victim’s backpack revealed various containers of what police suspect was cannabis and cocaine, along with a digital scale. They prepared paperwork to charge Roman with felony manufacture-delivery of cannabis, felony possession of a controlled substance, misdemeanor possession of cannabis, and two misdemeanor counts of resisting police. But on March 1, minutes before prosecutors were to bring the charges against Roman before a judge, CPD announced it had decided against pursuing the case “given the totality of circumstances and the department’s significant level of concern around this incident.”

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