Friday, Dec. 20th marks the 17th anniversary of one of the Chicago Police Department’s darkest days. It was on that date in 1996 that a police corruption investigation led to the arrest and the eventual prosecution of seven officers.
A joint investigation, conducted by the Chicago Police Department and the FBI, led to the indictments and ultimate convictions of seven Chicago police officers. It became known as the Austin Seven case because all of the officers were assigned to the 15th District tactical unit on the city’s West Side.
The undercover investigation was code-named Operation Broken Star. It reportedly targeted the officers for conspiring to rob and extort more than $65,000 from undercover agents who were posing as drug dealers.
Another Austin District tactical officer, who at the time was targeted but never indicted, is Otha U. McCoy II, also known as T.C. McCoy. For 17 years he has conducted his own investigation of Operation Broken Star and what he has discovered will shock even the most hardened skeptic.
Is it possible that Operation Broken Star itself was a malicious conspiracy hatched by local and federal investigators?
McCoy, who’s raised concerns about the case before, says he’s prepared to offer proof that his Austin Seven officers were the victims of an elaborate scheme by the FBI and the Chicago Police Department’s Internal Affairs division.
McCoy says the scheme involved the use of a paid informant and that paid informant’s friend, who pretended to be McCoy during a staged robbery of a female FBI agent posing as a drug dealer.
McCoy believes his investigation not only proves that the Austin Seven case was based on trumped up charges, but that the people leading that investigation should now face criminal charges of their own.
He will discuss the case Friday at 10 a.m. at New Tabernacle of Faith Baptist Church, 531 N. Kedzie.