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Family of Treasure Hendrix sues ex-cop for wrongful death

Charlie Bell was a Chicago police officer when Treasure Hendrix died of a drug overdose inside his RV.

Cynthia Hendrix breaks down crying during a press conference to announce a lawsuit against former police officer in the death of Treasure Hendrix, Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021 outside the Chicago Police Headquarters at 3510 S Michigan Ave in Bronzeville.| Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times
Cynthia Hendrix, mother of Treasure Hendrix, breaks down crying during a news conference Thursday about a wrongful death lawsuit filed against a former police officer.
Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times

The family of a woman found dead in an RV earlier this year has filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the former Chicago police officer who owned the motorhome.

Treasure Hendrix was found dead Aug. 19 in an RV on the 1500 block of South Western Avenue. Attorney Gregory Kulis said Hendrix would often stay the night with Charlie Bell, who was a police officer at the time of Hendrix’s death.

“Her family has filed a lawsuit against Charlie Bell, alleging that her untimely death was caused by his negligence, his acts and his omissions,” Kulis said Thursday. “We are going to make a concerted effort to get answers from the Chicago Police Department as to what occurred and what their investigation found because we right now have no information.”

A CPD spokesperson said Hendrix is currently classified as non-criminal but there is an open investigation into the allegations made by her family.

Bell resigned as a police officer in August, a CPD spokesperson said.

Attorney Gregory Kulis talks about the lawsuit filed against the former police officer in Treasure Hendrix’s death during a press conference, Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021 outside the Chicago Police Headquarters at 3510 S Michigan Ave in Bronzeville.
Attorney Gregory Kulis talks about the lawsuit filed against the former police officer in Treasure Hendrix’s death.
Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times

Kulis said the officer’s resignation came about seven days after Hendrix was found dead.

Bell could not be reached for comment.

Hendrix’s death was ruled an accidental overdose. The Cook County medical examiner’s office said it was caused by a combination of ethanol, cocaine, fentanyl, methamphetamine and MDMA.

The family said Hendrix didn’t have a history of using “hard drugs.”

“The family questions the medical examiner’s report. The family questions the Chicago Police Department,” Kulis said.

Hendrix and Bell had been romantically involved for several years, according to the lawsuit. The pair had been at a restaurant with one of Hendrix’s friends before Bell left to his RV.

Hendrix arrived at the RV later that night where Bell allegedly provided her with some drugs, the lawsuit claims. At some point, Bell found Hendrix unresponsive and called 911.

“This family has been looking for answers since August 19 and ran into brick walls at every turn,” said Eric Russell, an advocate for the family. “Clearly, the blood of Treasure [Hendrix] is on the hands of the Chicago Police Department. There continues to be a pattern and practice here of where the Chicago police seem to operate as they’re above the law.”

“There are a lot of red flags here, and this family is just asking reasonable questions,” Russell added.

Cynthia Hendrix shows off a pin with her and her daughter, Treasure Hendrix, right, after a press conference to announce a lawsuit against former police officer in the death of Treasure Hendrix, Thursday, Dec. 16, 2021 outside the Chicago Police Headquarters at 3510 S Michigan Ave in Bronzeville.
Cynthia Hendrix shows off a pin with her and her daughter, Treasure Hendrix, after a news conference Thursday outside Chicago Police Headquarters.
Anthony Vazquez/Sun-Times