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Chicago police officer faces firing for allegedly choking and beating pregnant girlfriend

Chicago police officer faces firing for allegedly choking and beating pregnant girlfriend

Chicago police officer faces firing for allegedly choking and beating pregnant girlfriend

A Chicago police officer faces firing for allegedly assaulting and abusing his pregnant girlfriend throughout their tumultuous relationship.

The Civilian Office of Police Accountability found that Officer Jose Moreno should be fired earlier this year, insisting that his alleged history of domestic violence “should not be tolerated.”

“Most egregiously he strangled (the woman), obstructing her airway and physically abused her while she was pregnant, both acts indicating increasing lethality,” COPA said in the February 26 report. “Officer Moreno downplayed his behavior and did not take responsibility for his actions.”

In December 2021, the woman told Chicago police that Moreno choked her and kicked her in the ribs in October, according to COPA. She also recalled another incident where he allegedly threatened her with a gun while he was holding one of their children.

She filed for an emergency protection order the next day, and Moreno was arrested and charged in January 2022, COPA said. Court records show the protective order has since been lifted and the misdemeanor battery case was dropped within months.

Moreno remains on active duty, earning an annual salary of $97,926, according to city records. A police spokesman said he was detailed to the alternative response unit, a unit made up of officers with disciplinary issues and those not medically cleared for full duty.

COPA opened its investigation after the woman reported Moreno to police, and she later detailed a pattern of abusive behavior that allegedly spanned years.

The woman said Moreno locked her out of their home in the spring of 2021 when she was pregnant, then came outside holding a gun in one hand and their child in the other. She also reported that Moreno hit her in the back around the same time, COPA said.

In July 2021, just four days after she gave birth, she said Moreno “tortured” her and kicked her out of their home. “I’m going to make your life hell until you get out of here,” he allegedly said.

At one point, he recorded her crying with one of their children present while holding a knife, according to the report. She told him she took the gun “because you’re telling me to kill myself and I’m sick of all this s—.”

The following month, he attacked her when she tried to record another fight, COPA said. At one point, he punched her in the wrist and thigh while trying to take her phone.

During the October incident that led to his arrest, the couple began arguing and Moreno choked her. “She reported that it lasted about five seconds and she couldn’t breathe,” COPA said.

He then pushed her to the floor and “kicked her in the ribcage,” according to the watchdog. He eventually took her keys, packed her bags and told her to leave, but she later returned for her children.

Among other alleged allegations, COPA found that Moreno hit the woman while she was pregnant, choked and kicked her.

It was not immediately known if Supt. Snelling agreed with the finding.