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Cops acquitted of beating charges

Evanston Police today say they’ll finally begin an internal investigation into claims that two Evanston police officers beat a man three years ago in a police department bathroom.

Criminal charges against the two — Officer Gus Horemis and former officer Michael Yorty — were dismissed Wednesday by a Cook County judge.

After hearing two days of prosecution testimony, the judge issued an unusual directed verdict acquitting the men before the officers’ attorneys even presented their case.

Sayyid Qadri of Rogers Park had claimed he was beaten after he was pulled over for a traffic stop, handcuffed and taken to the police station. A police surveilance video showed Mr. Qadri bleeding from a head wound after emerging from the bathroom.

Mr. Quadri, 21 at the time of the incident, has since filed and settled a civil lawsuit against the police departmet.

Deputy Police Chief Joe Bellino said in a statement today that once the department brought the charges to the attention of the state’s attorney’s office in March 2004, the prosecutors told the department to postpone the internal investigation until the criminal case was resolved.

Officer Horemis remains on administrative leave.

At the time the officers were indicted, then police chief Frank Kaminski apologized for what he called "the unprofessional actions of these officers."

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