Here’s a funny prank, courtesy of a cop in a southwestern suburb of Chicago. Try it on your friends. If you screw it up, you can still count on the mayor of your city to get your back. Provided that you’re a cop, of course.
TINLEY PARK, Ill. (STNG) — The owner of a Tinley Park pizza joint is seeking $2 million in damages from the village and a Tinley Park police officer who allegedly Tasered him this summer, sending the restaurant owner into convulsions and causing him to bite off a piece of his tongue.
Alexander Mendez, who with his wife owns Guardi’s Pizza and Catering, 16711 S. 80th Ave., filed a lawsuit Thursday in the federal court. The couple said Officer Joseph Vega shot Mendez in the head and shoulders with a Taser gun as part of a failed prank last June.
Police Chief Michael O’Connell referred questions about the incident to village administration. Mayor Ed Zabrocki said the Taser shot was an accident and all Taser guns were recalled after the incident.
Vega was disciplined for taking the Taser gun out of his holster, Zabrocki said. Zabrocki said attorneys advised him not to provide any more details.
According to the lawsuit, about 9 p.m. June 15, Vega came to Guardi’s and ordered pasta salad. When Mendez walked into the cooler to get the food, Vega asked Mendez’s wife if she wanted to see Vega scare her husband. She said “no,” according to court documents.
Then, Vega allegedly pointed the gun at Mendez’s head and fired, causing the prongs to stick to Mendez’s right temple and collarbone. Mendez went into convulsions and later became unconscious. He also bit off a piece of his tongue, the lawsuit said.
Vega is accused of immediately removing the Taser prongs, which caused Mendez to bleed profusely. Vega then called for back-up, and a supervisor and two detectives showed up and confiscated bloody towels, Mendez’s bloody glasses, the Taser prongs and the video surveillance equipment in the restaurant, the lawsuit claims.