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Judge Won't Raise Bond for Former Deputy Fire Chief Accused of Attempted Murder, Rape

Prosecutors asked Judge Peter Felice to raise or revoke the $150,000 bond given to former Chicago Ridge Deputy Fire Chief Gary Swiercz, 49, who is accused of the attempted rape and murder of his Tinley Park neighbor.

A Cook County judge denied prosecutors' motion Tuesday, Jan. 8, to raise or revoke bail for the former Chicago Ridge deputy fire chief accused of the attempted rape and murder of his Tinley Park neighbor.

Judge Peter Felice say he didn't see a reason to change the order of Judge Adam Donal Bourgeouis who gave Gary Swiercz, 49,  Swiercz has since posted bond and was released on electronic monitoring.

Swiercz doesn't have a criminal background, except a domestic violence case that was dismissed 16 years ago, Felice noted, and the defendant has voluntarily moved out of his Tinley Park condo to stay with relatives in Worth.

Swiercz, who was earlier placed on indefinite leave from his position as deputy fire chief with the Chicago Ridge Fire Department apparently put in for retirement on Monday, is accused of wearing a ski mask when he allegedly broke in to his neighbor's apartment in the early morning hours of Jan. 5. He was reportedly carrying a knife, rope, zip ties and duct tape. Prosecutors said in previous reports that Swiercz put a knife to the victim's throat and then tried to sexually assault her. They said he left the apartment after a scuffle with the woman.

On Tuesday, Assistant State's Attorney Amari Dawson asked Felice for a no bond order or to increase the bond with special conditions.

Presenting a summary of the alleged incident, Dawson said the victim smelled alcohol on the intruder. She also said Swiercz had admitted to police after he was read his Miranda rights that he had entered the woman's apartment with the knife and "realized in the middle of it" that he was a public servant and "shouldn't be doing it," which is why he fled. Dawson mentioned the existence of other evidence but she said didn't want to share it at the time.

Dawson said Swiercz poses "a real and proven threat" to the public. She told the judge Swiercz and the neighbor only knew each other in passing.

However, Swiercz's attorney, Colleen McSweeney-Moore balked at the request, and pointed out that Swiercz has had no contact with the victim since the alleged incident and that he is a civil servant who was honorably discharged after six years in the U.S. Army.

"In less than 48 hours, a judge not only heard the proffer made by the state, he also heard the mounds of mitigation," McSweeney-Moore told Felice. "Since then, absolutely nothing in the evidence has changed."

Felice apparently agreed with the defense, but did grant the state some of the special conditions requested. Swiercz will have to surrender his passport, any firearms, his firearm identification card and is to have absolutely no contact with the victim.

He is scheduled to be back in court to be formally charged on Feb. 7.

McSweeney-Moore has said in previous interviews that prescription drugs may have played a role in the alleged incident but declined to comment further after Tuesday's hearing.

Tammy January 11, 2013 at 01:16 AM
Your absolutely right it could have been asked for but, I'm sure it would have been reported on the news and in the paper that the judge refused a higher bond or no bond if it was asked for at the original bond hearing. That little piece would have made headline due to the fact he was a DC in a fire department and possible favoritism. I am aware bond can be revoked at any time but to ask for a higher bond or revocation of bond without presenting any new evidence is ridiculous unless he violated his bond. Then the request would make sense. Maybe the Patch editor can find out what was asked for by the SA?
Imanage January 11, 2013 at 11:49 AM
He wouldn't have a key to the box in Tinley since he worked in Chicago Ridge.
TheUNowen January 14, 2013 at 09:32 PM
He's white, so innocent until proven guilty I say!
One of the Neighbors May 12, 2013 at 04:17 PM
Maybe if this troubled you so much, you probably should stop talking to his parents when you see them in their yard or at the store. Stay true to your feelings. Wondering how you can see him through the windows and judge whether or not he's remorseful?? Must have nothing else to do and have a great set of binoculars!!! Im thinking your being rather intrusive on their privacy. Maybe just knock on the door!!!
One of the Neighbors May 12, 2013 at 04:24 PM
well said Tammy!!!!

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