SHEILA ZINNERMON, Plaintiff, v. CITY OF CHICAGO DEPARTMENT OF POLICE, Defendant.

No. 01 C 7007.United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division
September 21, 2001

MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER
James B. Moran, Senior Judge

Plaintiff, a former probationary police officer, claims that she was discharged in retaliation for reporting police misconduct by two other officers. Charges against one of the officers are to be heard by the Police Board on September 25, 2001. Plaintiff has been subpoenaed to testify at the hearing. She moves for a protective order precluding any inquiry of her at that hearing. The motion is denied.

This is not a case in which a plaintiff brings a constitutional challenge to a state administrative hearing. Rather, she claims that requiring her testimony by attorneys who represent the defendant in her case, without her attorney being present, is unfair and prejudicial to her. We think the principles developed in cases involving constitutional challenges apply with even greater force here. A municipality has a strong interest in the full adjudication of charges of misconduct by a police officer. A federal court should not intervene absent a demonstrated bias by the hearing tribunal, and we question whether federal intervention is warranted even then since the state courts are available for any redress that may be appropriate. See Ohio Civil Rights Commissionv. Dayton Christian Schools, Inc., 477 U.S. 619 (1986).