AP source: Wife, son of dead Illinois cop also investigated

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Fox Lake Officer Carefully Staged Suicide, Committed Criminal Acts: Cops

FOX LAKE, Ill. (AP) -- Authorities are investigating the wife and son of an Illinois police officer who they say killed himself after embezzling money for years from a department youth program he oversaw, an official said Thursday.

The case centers on the Fox Lake Police Explorer Post from which Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz allegedly stole thousands of dollars over the course of seven years. Gliniewicz's wife and son, Melodie and D.J. Gliniewicz, are caught up in the probe, said the official, who was briefed on the investigation. The official spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the investigation publicly.

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Authorities revealed the embezzlement investigation Wednesday and confirmed weeks of suspicion that Gliniewicz killed himself and staged the scene to look like he died in the line of duty. They also said their investigation points to criminal activity by at least two other people, but they refused to identify them.

The family issued a brief statement Wednesday through their attorneys in which they said they were still grieving but which didn't mention the finding that Lt. Gliniewicz took his own life or that he had been stealing from the youth program. The attorneys, Henry Tonigan and Andrew Kelleher, didn't immediately respond to voicemail and email messages sent Thursday seeking comment.

Melodie Gliniewicz helped her husband run the explorer program, in which he put young people interested in law enforcement careers through sophisticated training exercises. In a newspaper interview weeks ago, D.J. Gliniewicz angrily dismissed suggestions that his father took his own life.

This week's revelations stunned people in Fox Lake, a village of 10,000 people about 50 miles north of Chicago where the 52-year-old married father of four had long been a role model.

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Illinois Manhunt, Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz
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AP source: Wife, son of dead Illinois cop also investigated
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 02: Residents and police from Fox Lake and surrounding communities attend a vigil for slain Fox Lake police officer Lt. Joe Gliniewicz on September 2, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. Gliniewicz was shot and killed yesterday during a foot chase with three suspects who remain at large. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 02: Officers salute as the family of slain Fox Lake police officer Lt. Joe Gliniewicz arrive for a vigil held in his honor on September 2, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. Gliniewicz was shot and killed yesterday during a foot chase with three suspects. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Police officials follow Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz's family after a vigil at Lakefront Park to honor him on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015, in Fox Lake, Ill. Gliniewicz was shot and killed Tuesday while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police are searching for a second day to locate three suspects in the killing. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
A mourner holds a sign during a vigil at Lakefront Park to honor the memory of Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz on Wednesday, Sept. 2, 2015, in Fox Lake, Ill. Gliniewicz was shot and killed Tuesday while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Authorities broadened the hunt Wednesday for the suspects wanted in the fatal shooting. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
Police search from a helicopter for suspects in the shooting of a police officer, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
This undated photo provided by the Fox Lake Police Department shows Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, who was shot and killed Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015, in Fox Lake, Ill. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles were conducting a massive manhunt Tuesday in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of Gliniewicz. (Fox Lake Police Department photo via AP)
Members of various police agencies gather as they continue searching for suspects in the shooting of a police officer, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
CORRECTS TO GLINIEWICZ FROM GLINIEWITZ- Police officers confer while searching for suspects in the shooting of a police officer Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 outside Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
A heavily armed police officer walks in a shopping area after searching for suspects in the shooting of a police officer Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
Police officers meet up before heading out for a manhunt on Tuesday, September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. (Stacey Wescott/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: Police officers search an area for suspects involved in shooting an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: Police officers get get a break after coming off a search mission as temperatures exceeded 90 degrees during a manhunt for three suspects in the murder of a Fox Lake Police officer on September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. Lt. Joe Gliniewicz was found with a gunshot wound shortly after the department lost radio communication with him during a foot chase of three suspects. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: Police officers search an area for suspects involved in the shooting death of an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CORRECTS TO GLINIEWICZ FROM GLINIEWITZ- A police K-9 team rest after searching for suspects in the shooting of a police officer Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: A police sniper keeps watch from the roof of a home while other police search nearby for suspects involved in the shooting of an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: Police officers search an area for suspects involved in shooting an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: A police officers looks out across a search area as the manhunt continues for three suspects in the murder of a Fox Lake Police officer on September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. Lt. Joe Gliniewicz was found with a gunshot wound shortly after the department lost radio communication with him during a foot chase of three suspects. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Supporters hold signs as police continue searching for suspects in the shooting of a police officer Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewitz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
Supporters hold signs as police continue searching for suspects in the shooting of a police officer Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: Sisters Brittany (L) and Renee Evans join other residents in showing their support as the manhunt continues for three suspects in the murder of a Fox Lake Police officer on September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. Lt. Joe Gliniewicz was found with a gunshot wound shortly after the department lost radio communication with him during a foot chase of three suspects. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Members of local, state and federal police agencies gather as they continue searching for suspects in the shooting of a police officer Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. Fox Lake Police Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz was shot and killed while pursuing a group of suspicious men. Police with helicopters, dogs and armed with rifles are conducting a massive manhunt in northern Illinois for the individuals believed to be involved in the death of the three-decade member of the department and a father of four sons. (AP Photo/Michael Schmidt)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: A police officer searches an area for suspects involved in shooting an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
A sniper and a lookout stand on top of a roof searching for two men following the killing of a police officer Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. (Stacey Wescott/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)
Police officers search for suspects after a police officer was shot on Tuesday, September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. (Joe Shuman/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: Police officers search an area for suspects involved in shooting an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: Police officers search an area for suspects involved in the shooting death of an officer September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. A manhunt for three suspects is underway after an officer from Fox Lake Police was shot and killed this morning. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
FOX LAKE, IL - SEPTEMBER 01: A police officer cools down his search dog as temperatures exceeded 90 degrees during a manhunt for three suspects in the murder of a Fox Lake Police officer on September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Illinois. Lt. Joe Gliniewicz was found with a gunshot wound shortly after the department lost radio communication with him during a foot chase of three suspects. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Police officers patrol a swampy area where a manhunt is taking place on Tuesday, September 1, 2015 in Fox Lake, Ill. (Stacey Wescott/Chicago Tribune/TNS via Getty Images)
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Public works employees were pulling down the blue ribbons that residents had tied to trees and poles as a tribute to their slain hero. Signs around the small town that had praised the cop known as "G.I. Joe" suddenly disappeared, replaced in one case by another that labeled him "G.I. Joke."

Authorities who investigated his death as a homicide for weeks announced Wednesday that Gliniewicz meticulously staged his own suicide to make it look like he died in a confrontation with several suspects.

Investigators said they believed the 30-year police veteran — whose death prompted a weeks-long manhunt and whose funeral drew thousands of mourners — killed himself because his criminal activity was about to be exposed. Up until the day he was found dead, a new village administrator was pressing him to see the explorer program's books as part of a village-wide audit.

"It's breaking my heart," said Mark Weihofen, a 41-year-old school bus mechanic. "There is a 'We love you, Joe' sign that I pass by every day. ... It was already down."

Recovered text messages and other records now show Gliniewicz embezzled from the village's Police Explorer program for seven years, spending the money on mortgage payments, travel expenses, gym memberships, adult websites and loans to friends, Lake County Major Crimes Task Force Commander George Filenko said.

"Gliniewicz committed the ultimate betrayal," Filenko said. "We completely believed from Day One that this was a homicide."

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