Chicago Police officer charged with attacking man at hospital

SHARE Chicago Police officer charged with attacking man at hospital

Clauzell Gause was captured on hospital surveillance footage punching and shoving a 24-year-old man who had struck him while being transported for a mental health evaluation. | Sun-Times library

A veteran Chicago Police officer was charged with official misconduct Tuesday for allegedly punching and pushing a man who hit him at Jackson Park Hospital two years ago.

“You and I and those who chose a life of public service, we’re held to a higher standard. That’s the long and short of it,” Cook County Judge Adam Bourgeois Jr. told Officer Clauzell Gause.

“Whatever happened, happened. … And you have to face the consequences.”

Gause, 40, was ordered released on his own recognizance.

Assistant State’s Attorney Theresa Smith said Gause was captured on hospital surveillance footage punching and shoving the 24-year-old victim, who was being transported by Gause and another officer for a mental health evaluation on the night of June 3, 2014.

The man, who was taken to the hospital involuntarily, first punched the officer while he was having his blood pressure taken, Smith said.

The patient was eventually restrained and handcuffed at the hospital at 7531 S. Stony Island. Gause, who held the man’s arms behind his back as they walked with another person, then allegedly pushed the man into an observation room.

Gause, who was in uniform, then pushed the handcuffed man into a wall to the right of a doorway, Smith said.

The force caused the victim to bounce of the wall and into the direction of Gause, who then swung into man’s face with a closed fist with his right hand, Smith said.

That blow caused the man to fall onto the bed. But Gause wasn’t done, Smith said.

The officer then allegedly held the man down on the bed with his right hand while he used his left hand to punch the man a few more times.

After the attack, Gause left the room, Smith said.

The victim suffered lacerations and swelling to his forehead, Smith said, offering to show Bourgeois the video footage.

The judge declined to see the tape.

Defense attorney William Fahy said Gause has “honorably” served the department for the past 12 years and has no disciplinary record.

Gause has served most of his career in the 5th District, Fahy said.

Two women who were in court on Gause’s behalf declined comment.

Gause was suspended and placed on administrative duties since the department learned of his alleged conduct in 2014, police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said in a prepared statement.

“The Chicago Police Department has zero tolerance for misconduct or any activity which undermines the integrity of our officers and our efforts to rebuild public trust,” Guglielmi said.

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