The former Waukegan police officer who shot and killed 19-year-old Marcellis Stinnette has been charged with second-degree murder and also charged in a second case, court records show.
Dante Salinas, 39, of Gurnee, was charged with three counts of second-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter, aggravated battery causing great bodily harm and two counts of official misconduct.
The three counts of second-degree murder and one count of involuntary manslaughter stem from the Stinnette shooting.
The two counts of official misconduct and one count of aggravated battery causing bodily harm stem from a separate case where Salinas allegedly pistol-whipped Angel Salgado during an arrest on August 31, 2019.
Salgado suffered lacerations and bone fractures during the incident.
Salinas was fired from the Waukegan Police Department following the Stinnette shooting. He had been an officer with the department for five years.
Then-Waukegan Police Chief Wayne Walles said Salinas had been fired for “multiple policy and procedure violations.”
Then-Waukegan Mayor Sam Cunningham said that Salinas did not activate his bodycam to properly archive the Stinnette shooting.
Waukegan resident Tafara Williams, who was 20 at the time, and Stinnette, who also lived in Waukegan, were sitting in a car near Liberty Street and Oak Street in Waukegan in front of Williams’ home around 11:55 p.m. on October 20, 2020.
Bodycam footage showed Waukegan Police Officer James Keating pulling up in his squad car next to their vehicle.
“Aren’t you the dude who got into an accident? You got into an accident right? What’s your name?” Keating asked.
Stinnette told the officer his name was “King” and Keating replied, “I thought you were Stinnette?”
The officer walked around to the passenger seat of the car where Stinnette was seated and told him he was under arrest because of a warrant.
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Williams, who was seated in the driver’s seat, put the car into gear and sped off, nearly running Keating over, the video showed.
A short time later, a second Waukegan police officer, identified as Salinas, spotted the vehicle as it pulled out of a driveway and drove around the first officer’s car, which had its emergency lights activated.
A brief police pursuit ensued and Williams’ car slid off the road near Helmholz Avenue and Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue.
Salinas jumped out of his car and yelled, “Get out of the fu—– car” as Williams’ car reversed, dashcam video showed.
Salinas fired approximately six shots into the vehicle, striking both Williams and Stinnette, as it reversed before coming to a stop when it crashed into a building.
Stinnette was transported by ambulance to Vista Medical Center East in Waukegan where he was pronounced dead.
Williams was transported by ambulance to Advocate Condell Medical Center in Libertyville in serious condition.
Williams spoke from her hospital bed after the incident in October and shared her view of the incident.
“I rolled down the window and turned on all the lights in the car so the officer could see. I had no weapons and I wasn’t doing anything illegal.” Williams said.
“I asked the officer if we were free to leave. The officer took a few steps away from the car and got on his cellphone. I drove away very slowly because I was scared to get out of the car,” Williams said.
“That day, I lost the love of my life and the father of my 7-month-old son. [The baby] is the only thing I have left of Marcellis,” Williams said tearfully.
Williams also claimed that she and Stinnette both had their hands up and that the first officer who approached their car harassed them and knew Stinnette by name.
Williams also claimed that the first officer never turned on his lights or sirens.
Court records show warrants were recently issued for Salinas in Lake County Circuit Court. The warrants carried a bond of $500,000, records show.
Salinas surrendered himself to the Lake County Jail Thursday morning.
Salinas remains held in the jail and is expected to appear in bond court Thursday afternoon.
Williams was charged Wednesday with aggravated fleeing to elude, court records show.
Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart is scheduled to hold a press conference on the charges at 1 p.m.