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Home > Press Page

Wednesday, August 17, 2011 —Three known gang members from the south suburbs face a list of criminal charges after one fought with police and another nearly incited a riot during a routine traffic stop, Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart announced Wednesday.

Maurice Lanier Carlton Polk Tauraun Lanier

Maurice Lanier, 27, of Broadview, Carlton Polk, 31, of Lynwood, and Tauraun Lanier, 39, of Broadview, were arrested outside Wharton Elementary School in the 7500 block of West 64th Street in Summit. All three are known Gangster Disciples and convicted felons. Though the area of the arrest is a designated “Safe School Zone,” it is a known area for gang crimes and narcotics trafficking.

Polk and Tauraun Lanier were in a parked vehicle near the school on Aug. 10 when passing officers from the Cook County Sheriff’s Gang Unit and Summit Police smelled marijuana. The officers were patrolling the area as part of a new suburban gang crimes initiative partnering sheriff’s police with suburban agencies.

When the two officers approached the parked vehicle, Tauraun Lanier exited and was taken into custody without incident. Polk, who is 6-6 and 330 pounds, attempted to flee, but as police approached him, he began fighting with them. That scuffle led police to use pepper spray to subdue Polk and they were then able to place him in handcuffs.

At that time, Maurice Lanier came from a nearby house and, with one hand placed under his shirt, told the officers “I’ll kill you” if they didn’t let the two go free. When police drew their weapons and ordered him to the ground, Lanier kept his hand hidden and told police “shoot me.” Lanier then began inciting associates in nearby houses to come out and a large crowd then began gathering near the two officers. Officers approached Lanier and he attempted to flee, but was detained and, after a brief struggle, taken into custody.

Police found a total of three grams of marijuana packaged in five plastic bags in the center console of Tauraun Lanier’s vehicle. Polk had a total of 12 grams of heroin packaged in 42 foil packets and  8 grams of crack cocaine packaged in 25 plastic bags. Maurice Lanier was found to have a small amount of marijuana in his pocket when he was arrested.

Polk, who has prior arrests for possession of cocaine and other drug charges, is charged with felony possession of cocaine and felony possession of heroin – and both are Class X felonies, the highest criminal charge in Illinois, because he was arrested in front of a school. He continues to be held in Cook County Jail on $300,000.

Tauraun Lanier, whose criminal history includes prior arrests for drug and gun crimes, is charged with possession of cannabis.

Maurice Lanier, who has been arrested numerous times on gun and drug charges, also has a history of arrests for assaulting and disarming police officers. He is charged with assault and resisting arrest – the eighth time he’s been arrested for resisting or assaulting police. He also has prior arrests for intimidation by mob or gang actions.

Polk is set to appear in Bridgeview court again on Sept. 6, while the Laniers are set to appear in Bridgeview court in October.

Sheriff Dart expressed thanks for the prompt assistance in the incident by officers from the Cook County Sheriff’s Office, Summit and Bridgeview police departments.

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