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Letter to the Editor: McCutcheon's Victims

The mother whose daughter and finance were in the car hit by former Grayslake Police Chief Matt McCutcheon shares their side of the story.

It has been reported that Police Chief Matt McCutcheon of Grayslake was involved in an accident and arrested for driving while intoxicated and armed with a loaded weapon while intoxicated. While it is "claimed" that he struck a 'silver Dodge' head-on, I would like to make it clear that it is not a 'claim' but a fact.

I am the Mother of that 'silver Dodge' and would like the public to know that the 'silver Dodge' held two people, my daughter and her fiance. It is also a fact that the Police Chief admitted in the police report that he had drank three martini's and a few beers and that he hade been driving the vehicle that struck Kate and Todd.  

Though Mayor Rhett Taylor of Grayslake prefers to use the word "allegations" and speaks to the Chief's "dedication to safety and security," I as the victims Mother dispute that. My daughter and her Fiance were not safe or secure when Chief McCutcheon made the choice to drink and drive.   

I can speak to my daughter's "exemplary performance" as well. Kate is a graduate of and went on to graduate from Augustana College. She works full time in Grayslake at a nationally recognized daycare as an Assistant Director and teacher. She is responsible for caring for the children of many Grayslake residents. My daughter is a Honor Society member at the where she is obtaining her masters degree. Kate recently purchased a vehicle from a well known Grayslake dealership as well as shops in the village on a regular basis. Though Kate is not a Grayslake resident she certainly is a  part of the community.    

On March 30, 2012, I recieved the phone call that every parent dreads. My daughter and future son-in-law were the victims of a head-on collision caused by what appeared to be a drunk driver. The 30 minutes it took us to travel to the scene may be the worst minutes we experienced as parents. Finding Kate and Todd shaken and scared but alive, we were not only thankful but blessed. I only hope Chief McCutcheon never recieves such a call.    

I do not understand the words "claim," "allegations" and "if" used  by people refering to the Chief's negligent behavior that night when he clearly admits to drinking and driving. Why did the Chief refuse all intoxication testing? Why was the Chief's weapon removed from his possesion by the Kenosh County Police if he was acting as a responsible officer? Why is the Chief on "paid leave" while his victims struggle with the financial burden of the loss of a vehicle, insurance responsibilities, filing claims and dealing with all the problems Chief McCutcheon caused on top of working at their jobs so they can have the money to replace the vehicle they just lost? I hardly think "Serve and Protect" applys here.    

While some people rally for the Chief and speak to all his dedication and service, who is standing up for his victims? Should this man not be held to a higher standard given his position? Chief McCutcheon made a choice to drink and drive and needs to be held accountable for his actions. Stepping down from his position as a Chief is a start, however in my opinion he needs to be removed from the force altogether. This is not a person I want protecting me or my family.    

The purpose of this statement is to make the public aware that these two innocent victims are human beings not just a "silver Dodge." Kate and Todd are children, grandchildren, siblings and friends. Due to Chief McCutcheon's choices that night they are now also his victims.                                                                  

Mother of the "Silver Dodge"

Allison 'Roberts' Buckardt April 14, 2012 at 04:17 AM
I am shakinright now because I am so furious with the comments being posted by 'Bob'. The severity of the injuries that you keep refering to is irrelevent. The chief of a police force, who has sworn to serve an protect, broke the law in a very serious was. He should be held to a higher standard and he made a choice. The definition of totaled that you keep giving is also irrelevent. The fact is: they will b reimbursed by his insurance company for only a fraction of what they stil owe. So now they have to continue paying off that car and also buy a new one. I do, however, agree nwith you on one point: everyone should have their chance to tell their side of the story. But my problem is, we are not dealing with a he said/she said; we are dealing with facts. He drank, and he got behind the wheel. He broke the law. He cause harm to someone else (once again the extent of that injury is irrelevent). End of story.
Alexander Roberts April 15, 2012 at 06:17 AM
The fact you are on here defending this behavior in any way whatsoever is disgusting Bob, and is also a sad statement about what society has become.
John April 15, 2012 at 10:55 AM
He's not defending the actions, if you spend the time to read, instead of using emotion, over rationality. He's defending the use of the term 'alleged' and other such terms. Journalists are required to use these terms when someone is charged with a crime, but not convicted. Oddly enough, journalists usually cant wait to forget that term whenever a police officer is involved. Unless you were there, the only fact is that a crash occured, everything else will be settled in court. Either way, he made his mistake, it will cost him everything. Yes police are held to a higher standard, so he'll lose his job. If it wasnt a police officer, they would pay a fine, wouldnt have their picture in the paper and still keep their livelihood, and support their family. And less we also forget, his name is Matt, he messed up and will pay the consequences, now the lynching can end.
RH01 June 26, 2012 at 04:18 PM
I've known McCutcheon for a long time. He's been a drinker since the day I met him - I mean a heavy drinker. He's always drank and drive - he's just never been caught. He's arrogant, mean, and a jerk. I hope he gets the book thrown at him and never gets work in law enforcement again.
allen bishop February 25, 2013 at 08:04 PM
I have known mccutcheon my whole life. When he told me he wanted to become a cop i tried to beat some sence into him. Being raised by an enforcement officer and working with them my whole life i know it is a thankless job that slowly dsstroys you. I feel terrible for everyone and hope everyone can learn forgivness.

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