Rich Milz and Chicago Bears Tank Johnson Bodyguard Murder

Rich Milz and Chicago Bears Tank Johnson Bodyguard Murder

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Joined: Sat Dec 09, 2006 1:22 pm
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Attorney: Bears’ Johnson not responsible in shooting

Authorities have twice interviewed Bears lineman Terry “Tank” Johnson following the fatal shooting of Johnson’s bodyguard at a North Side nightclub where both men spent early Saturday morning, police said.

Willie Posey, 26, was shot once and found lying inside the Ice Bar, 738 N. Clark St., in the trendy River North neighborhood just after 1:30 a.m., said police spokeswoman Monique Bond.


Johnson’s attorney held a brief news conference this afternoon after the Bears star was re-interviewed by Chicago police at his Gurnee home. Johnson had been interviewed earlier in Chicago after the shooting. He is not considered a suspect in the shooting, police said.

“Tank Johnson had no direct responsibility for this tragic shooting,” attorney Thomas Briscoe said. “He has cooperated with Chicago police and continues to cooperate this afternoon. At the request of the Chicago Police Department, we’re not going to discuss details so as not to compromise the investigation.”

Chicago Police Supt. Philip Cline said a fight broke out before the shooting took place at 1:30 a.m. Saturday and it appears only one shot was fired. The round struck Posey in the left shoulder and traveled into his chest. The victim was pronounced dead at Northwestern Memorial Hospital a short time later.

Cline said he did not have details on what caused the fight to break out but a team source said police told the team that Johnson was not involved in the incident that sparked the shooting.

“We are right in the middle of this thing. So I am not going to talk about what witnesses have said,” Cline explained. He said the department continues to interview witnesses and that there have been no arrests.

Briscoe said Johnson and Posey had been friends for at least 10 years, since high school in Tempe, Ariz. Posey was staying with Johnson “but was in the process of moving out.”

Johnson, 25, and Posey were charged Thursday after police raided Johnson’s Gurnee home and found six guns, some of which were loaded and laying in plain view. The Bears have benched Johnson for Sunday’s game.

Johnson was charged with six misdemeanor counts of unlawful possession of a weapon without a Firearm Owner’s Identification card. The weapons seized during the raid included a .44 magnum Smith & Wesson revolver, a .50 caliber Desert Eagle handgun, a .45 caliber handgun, a .308 caliber Winchester rifle and two assault-style rifles–a Colt AR-15 and a .223 caliber.

Posey, who listed the same Gurnee address as his home, was charged with felony possession of marijuana. Police said they found more than 2 ounces of marijuana on a table where Posey was sitting.

When asked why Johnson was partying at a nightclub less than 36 hours after his arrest, his attorney answered, “I can’t comment on that.”

Briscoe said Johnson has spoken to Bears General Manager Jerry Angelo and Bobby Howard, the team’s director of player development. He said Johnson is concerned about the shooting’s possible impact on his status with the team.

“Of course he’s worried about that. He’s worried about his two families, his first family being his two daughters and his second family being the Chicago Bears and Chicago Bear fans. He’s very concerned that people are going to get the idea that he has let them down.”

The Bears issued a statement Saturday that they were aware of the shooting, but didn’t mention Johnson by name. “We are currently gathering information to learn more about the situation,” the statement said.

The Bears had a brief “walkthrough” practice Saturday morning, their final preparation for Sunday’s game against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at Soldier Field. The team’s Halas Hall training facility in Lake Forest was under tight security and no visitors or news media representatives were allowed on the grounds.

Johnson’s attorney said the lineman is heartbroken about the loss of his friend.

“He’s going through a tough grieving process. He’s getting hundreds of phone calls from friends and supporters. And he needs some quiet time. He is confused because everything happened so quickly,” Briscoe said

via Northwest Indiana dicussion board

NEWS REPORT: Detective Richard A Milz Chicago Tribune Murder Arrest case

NEWS REPORT: Detective Richard A Milz Chicago Tribune Murder Arrest case

Hunt ends in arrest

Alleged gang member charged in murder of Tank Johnson’s bodyguard

December 29, 2006|By Chicago Tribune via Detective Richard Milz (WordPress)

After a two-week hunt, police charged an alleged gang member out on parole with murdering the bodyguard of Bears lineman Terry “Tank” Johnson in a nightclub scuffle.

Michael Selvie, 34, did not know either Johnson or Willie B. Posey before bumping into Johnson in Ice Bar on Dec. 16, police said.

The two men exchanged words, but had parted peacefully before Posey, 26–who also was Johnson’s boyhood friend and housemate–stepped in and hit Selvie.

That is when Selvie pulled out a gun and shot the bodyguard, said Lt. Anthony Riccio, acting commander of the Belmont Area detective headquarters.

Though the killing happened on a dance floor with plenty of witnesses, police struggled to get cooperation and consistent stories from people there, sources said.

Authorities hope Johnson will be a key witness in their case against Selvie, but one source familiar with the investigation said police have been frustrated by his changing account of events.

In the hours after the shooting, Johnson at first told police he was not at the bar, but later admitted that he was there. At one point, sources said, he described the gunman down to a gap between his teeth–but Johnson then failed to identify Selvie in a lineup Wednesday.

In an effort to get a complete and accurate account of what the football player saw, authorities asked him Wednesday to take a polygraph.

Lorna Propes, Johnson’s lawyer, said her client had been cooperative throughout the investigation, and she refused to allow the polygraph test.

“The state’s attorney’s office asked that Tank take a polygraph, and I refused because [the tests] are unreliable and there was absolutely no need to do that,” she said. “Tank Johnson has been cooperative with the police every step of the way.”

Just before police announced the charges Thursday night, Selvie’s lawyer Jayne Ingles stood outside the Belmont Area headquarters with her client’s mother, Essie Selvie, and said he was being railroaded by police desperate to make an arrest in a high-profile case.

“They wanted to make an arrest. It’s a very high-profile case,” she said. “So now they have one.”

Although Selvie’s criminal history includes 30 arrests and seven felony convictions, Ingles said he has no record of violence. Selvie is expected to appear in bond court at noon Friday, according to state’s attorney spokeswoman Tandra Simonton.

Police got a break in the case through a combination of forensic evidence on a shirt Selvie allegedly left at the scene, as well as identifications of him from photographs taken at the club, Riccio said.

Posey’s mother, Alice Gaines, and three sisters were driving back from Forest Park Thursday after visiting his gravesite when they heard the news on the radio.

After arriving at their South Side home, Gaines said she felt relieved and grateful to the police, the media and witnesses who stepped forward to solve the murder of her youngest child.

“It’s not going to bring him back, but it will put some closure for the family,” she said.