Cook County correctional officer killed in hit-and-run www.privateofficer.com
Cook County IL July 20 2012 The hit and run death of a popular Cook County correctional officer devastated not only her family, but also her colleagues and, it’s said, even some inmates.
Nikkii Bostic-Jones, 37, was struck around 10:50 p.m. Wednesday while crossing the street outside the Cook County Jail on her way to work, officials said.
She was hit by a full-sized navy blue van, possibly a Chevrolet with white and blue stripes heading north, officials said. Bostic-Jones flew into the southbound lane and was hit and pinned under a sheriff’s car, county sheriff officials said.
The van sped off.
“They need to turn themselves in,” said the woman’s sister, Andrell Bostic, 28, as tears welled in her eyes. “They took a great person’s life. . . . She’s all we had. It’s just not real.”
The correctional officer died at Mount Sinai Hospital.
Friends, family and co-workers lined up outside the hospital as the woman’s body, wrapped in white blanket, was wheeled to an ambulance. She was taken to the county medical examiner’s office.
“She was a great person — a very loving person,” said her husband, James Jones, who had been married to his wife for seven years but knew her for 25 years.
Bostic-Jones’ fellow officers at the jail were devastated at the sudden loss a woman whose presence — her smile, kindness — loomed large, they said.
“Her co-workers are truly, truly heartbroken,” sheriff’s spokesman Frank Bilecki said, noting that counselors were brought in to help grieving staffers. “She started every shift with her co-workers with a smile and hugs,” Bilecki said.
He said even some of the detainees in the maximum security division where she worked — keeping watch over suspects in murders, big-time drug deals and other more serious criminal cases — were taking it hard. Her duties ranged from keeping an eye on the suspects during the hour their allowed for recreation outside their cell to escorting them to transport vans, when necessary, to appear before a judge in suburban court.
“She treated them fairly, and they treated her with dignity and respect,” Bilecki said adding “and to be able to command respect like that — that’s a special skill she had.”
He said the deputy driving the sheriff’s vehicle that Bostic-Jones was ultimately pinned under — after the hit-and-run van sped off — also is heavy-hearted. The officer was taken to St. Anthony Hospital for observation after the crash.
“I feel horrible for the family, but I also feel bad for the officer — he’s struggling heavily with this right now, too,” Bilecki said.
The sheriff’s office, which oversees the jail, has also offered grief counseling to the family.
A vigil is scheduled for 7 a.m. Friday outside the jail — the time when Bostic-Jones would be ending her shift.
Bostic-Jones had been working an overnight shift, Bilecki said, because she had a young daughter and wanted to have her days open for her.
Her husband said she wanted to make sure she continued working to keep her family together, especially since her mother died from cancer three years ago.
“She was all about family time,” he said, adding that she loved being with her 6-year-old daughter.
Bostic-Jones also loved sports.
“She was swimming every day,” he said. “She loved biking, motorcycles and sports.”
She was even looking forward to watching the Summer Olympics at their home in Plainfield.
Police said they are searching for a van with the Illinois license plate of H941017 or a similar combination.
The van possibly has damage to the headlights, front end and right side, according to an alert issued by police.
Anyone with information about the incident can contact the Chicago Police Department’s Major Accident Investigation Unit at (312) 745-4521.
Source:Chicago Sun Times