Tinley Park Mayor Off The Hook

A suburban Chicago mayor won’t face criminal prosecution after he shouted “mayor coming through” and removed police traffic cones to allow a party bus he was riding in jump ahead of traffic leaving a Paul McCartney concert.

Attorney Charles Hervas wrote in an Oct. 20 report of his investigation into an ethics complaint that Tinley Park Mayor Jacob Vandenberg’s behavior following a Paul McCartney concert on July 26 was “inappropriate and misguided,” but “does not rise to the level deserving punishment under the Illinois Criminal Code’s Office Misconduct Provision.”

Tinley Park Mayor Jacob Vandenberg
– Tinley Park Mayor Jacob Vandenberg

The complaint filed in August by Tinley Park resident Michael Stuckly accused Vandenberg of using his position to gain special treatment and resisting or obstructed police, The Daily Southtown reported.

Police records show Vandenberg began moving traffic cones meant to keep traffic flowing without permission.

The officers responsible for directing traffic following the concert at the village’s Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre wrote in their memorandums that they had to hold up traffic to give the bus Vandenberg was a passenger on preferential treatment.

One of the officers in her memorandum said Vandenberg shouted “mayor coming through” as he began moving cones at her post, and also yelled, “I’m the mayor” as he moved a second set of cones to allow the bus to pass.

Vandenberg has said that he “should not have interfered” with the officers’ duties and apologized for any “interference or offense they perceived that evening.” He also said that he, relatives and friends were on the bus, and that while leaving the concert he “grew frustrated with the traffic pattern and the gridlock it was causing.”

“The mayor placed himself and the public at risk by his careless and ill-advised conduct,” Hervas wrote in the report. “Upon further reflection by the mayor after the incident, he understood the foolishness of his actions and admitted the same.”

Tinley Park is about 29 miles  (47 kilometers) southwest of Chicago.