Farrakhan’s squad car, a black, high-mileage Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, was purchased used from Palatine Police Department on Aug. 28, 2008 — right in the middle of his busiest period as a cop.
Records from the Illinois Secretary of State showed that Farrakhan signed the title over to the city, using the name “Wallace Farrakhan,” which he prefers on all official police documents.
The car, which has tinted windows and police lights mounted behind the grill and on the rear parcel shelf, was still parked in the cul-de-sac outside his home earlier this month when a photographer snapped a picture of it.
And it was tucked away in his four-car garage when a photographer returned last week.
But the squad got a far more public display last summer, when it lead Minister Farrakhan’s imposing, presidential-style motorcade of matching, black Hummer SUVs to several impromptu “walkabout” appearances on the South and West sides.
Videos of the visits posted on YouTube show the minister beaming beatifically beside his son and shaking hands with residents as a phalanx of sharp-suited, bow-tie-wearing Fruit of Islam security guards kept watch next to the squad car.
Officer Farrakhan is then shown in at least one of the videos using the squad car’s police lights to stop traffic and help his father’s motorcade make a dramatic exit.
To the casual observer, it was indistinguishable from an undercover Chicago Police escort. But the clearly visible license plate was registered to the City of Harvey.
Official Chicago Police escorts are normally reserved for high-ranking public officials and foreign dignitaries. They typically have to be cleared by the Department’s Special Events and Liaison Unit, according to Chicago Police spokesman Adam Collins. But “the CPD does not provide Louis Farrakhan with a motorcade,” Collins said, and it “doesn’t have any record of such a request.”
Illinois law does allow police officers to use their powers anywhere in the state, according to John Millner, a former Republican state senator, Elmhurst Police chief and head of the Illinois Police Chief’s Association.
But by custom, cops are supposed to use their powers outside their jurisdiction only in an emergency, in areas immediately contiguous to their jurisdiction, or at the invitation of the department whose area they’re in, he said.
More to the point, Millner said, he would like to know, “Who is Louis Farrakhan to have a motorcade?
“Why are Harvey taxpayers paying for a vehicle to protect someone who doesn’t even live in their community?”
He adds: “What is the nexus between this man’s security work for the Nation of Islam, and his employment as a Harvey police officer?”
By: Kim Janssen