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Police: Gang Members Fought With Officers, Tried To Start Riot

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Three alleged gang members in the south suburbs are in serious trouble, after police say they fought with officers and tried to start a riot during a traffic stop last week.

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, according to the Cook County Sheriff's office.

Sheriff's police say they are all convicted felons and known members of the Gangster Disciples. Even though the area around Wharton is designated as a "Safe School Zone," it is actually quite unsafe and is plagued with gang crimes and drug dealing, according to the sheriff's office.

Polk and Tauraun Lanier allegedly were sitting in a parked car near the school on Wednesday, Aug. 10, when sheriff's Gang Unit and Summit police officers happened to pass by. They were on patrol as part of a new suburban gang crimes partnership between the sheriff's office and local police departments.

The two officers smelled marijuana in the car, and arrested Tauraun Lanier without incident. But Polk, who stands 6 feet 6 inches tall and weighs 300 pounds, attempted to run off, and began fighting with the officers when they caught up, according to the sheriff's office.

Police had to use pepper spray to subdue Polk, who was arrested and handcuffed, according to the sheriff's office.

But the discord didn't end there. As police arrested Polk, Maurice Lanier came out of a nearby house with a hand under his shirt, and told the officers, "I'll kill you," unless they released the other two suspects, the sheriff's office said.

Police drew their weapons and ordered Maurice Lanier to get on the ground, but he kept his hand concealed and told the officers, "Shoot me," according to the sheriff's office.

He then incited neighbors to come out, and a crowd began swarming around the officers, sheriff's police said. Ultimately, the officers prevailed, catching Lanier as he tried to run off, and arresting him after a brief struggle.

Tauraun Lanier's car had 3 grams of marijuana in plastic bags hidden in the center console, while Polk had 12 grams of heroin in 42 foil packets, and 8 grams of crack cocaine in 25 plastic bags, police said. Maurice Lanier only had a small amount of marijuana in his pocket.

Polk was charged with felony possession of heroin and cocaine, which are made more serious because he was arrested right in front of as school. His bond was set at $300,000, and he is set to appear for a preliminary hearing on Sept. 6 at the Bridgeview Courthouse.

Tauraun Lanier was charged with possession of cannabis, according to the sheriff's office.

Maurice Lanier was charged with assault and resisting arrest – the eighth time he has been arrested for such a crime. He also has a record for intimidation for mob and gang action, and many past gun and drug charges, sheriff's police said.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.

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