Crime & Courts

McHenry city police officer arrested, charged with theft

McHENRY – An 11-year veteran of the McHenry Police Department was charged Tuesday with theft of money confiscated in a drug arrest, Police Chief John Jones said.

Dale Hojnacki, 35, of McHenry, was charged with felony theft of more than $500, according to a statement by Jones. Hojnacki was taken to the McHenry County Jail. Bond was set at $15,000.

Police discovered that money was missing during a routine audit. The exact amount is under investigation, Jones said.

According to the criminal complaint, the theft took place between June 23, 2010, and Nov. 22, 2011, and occurred at 333 S. Green St. – the McHenry Police Department. After his arrest, Hojnacki resigned from the police department, according to the statement.

“During the course of the investigation, witnesses were interviewed and evidence was collected,” Jones said in the statement. “The investigation has determined that Hojnacki acted alone and is the sole offender.”

Jones said the investigation into Hojnacki’s conduct is ongoing, and additional charges against him could be forthcoming. 

“I find Officer Hojnacki’s actions to be despicable and I will not tolerate any act that makes him no better than the criminals we arrest on a daily basis,” Jones said in the statement. “We hold our officers to the highest of standards, allowing the public to trust in those men and women who are sworn to uphold the law.

“Any officer that would tarnish the uniform worn by so many fantastic officers of the McHenry Police Department deserves to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”

Upon conviction, the theft charge carries a sentence of two to five years in prison and a fine up to $25,000.

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