Crime & Courts

Lake in the Hills police attorney to review ex-deputy chief's pension after sex assault conviction

Alan Bokowski, 61, of the 1300 block of Dolo Rosa Vista, Crystal Lake
Alan Bokowski, 61, of the 1300 block of Dolo Rosa Vista, Crystal Lake

The Lake in the Hills Police Pension Board’s lawyer will look into whether a retired deputy police chief’s recent conviction will affect his pension.

Alan Bokowski, 61, was convicted in February and is serving a 4½-year prison sentence for raping a teenage girl in 2015.

“We want to know whether or not there is any action we need to take about his pension, and we want to do our due diligence,” board Vice President Stan Helgerson said.

Board President Lawrence Howell said attorney Richard Reimer is looking to see whether Bokowski’s conviction could jeopardize his pension. Bokowski is serving jail time for crimes committed after he retired from the Lake in the Hills Police Department in 2006.

Bokowski worked for the department for 26 years.

The former police officer pleaded guilty to the most serious charge against him in exchange for the dismissal of additional weapons and sex abuse charges.

Bokowski earns $84,323 a year, receiving a 3 percent increase each year, finance director Shane Johnson said.

“This is all new to us, and we’ll see what the attorney comes back with,” Helgerson said.

The five-member board was supposed to meet at 4 p.m. Tuesday, but it did not have a quorum. One member was out because of a family death, and another got called into a police investigation.

The board meets quarterly each year, and Howell said the meeting will be rescheduled for a future date.

Howell said it is unclear how long the lawyer’s review will take, and he does not recall the board ever having to revoke someone’s pension.

Bokowski, of the 1300 block of Dolo Rosa Vista, Crystal Lake, was charged in 2016 with criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual abuse, according to an eight-count criminal complaint filed in McHenry County court.

McHenry County Assistant State’s Attorney Sharyl Eisenstein read a victim-impact statement in court, stating the victim’s father said Bokowski showed little remorse for harming the 16-year-old girl.

“Al made it sounds like he should not be held accountable because he didn’t want to go to jail,” the father wrote.

Bokowski had known members of the victim’s family for more than 20 years, was invited to holiday dinners and had been considered extended family, the victim’s stepmother wrote in a statement.

The teenager and her stepmother had been helping Bokowski care for his ailing mother, and eventually, the teen girl began accompanying Bokowski to his mother’s home by herself, according to the parents’ written statements.

“Since I’d known Al for a long time, I trusted him with her,” the victim’s stepmother wrote.

Crystal Lake police began their investigation after meeting with the concerned parents who reported that their teenage daughter was sexually assaulted at Bokowski’s home, according to a news release from Crystal Lake police at the time.

Police have obtained a recording of Bokowski admitting to having sexual contact with the girl, prosecutors said.

Two charges were dropped as part of a negotiated plea less than two weeks before he was scheduled for a jury trial. He was charged with possessing firearm ammunition, several shotguns and pistol and rifle rounds without a firearm owner’s identification card. He also was accused of inappropriately touching a woman in 2015, according to the same complaint.

The county has kept $10,000 of Bokowski’s $25,000 bail to potentially cover ongoing mental health expenses for the family, attorneys said.

Bokowski is due in court Aug. 21 for a status update about his payments to the family.

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