CHICAGO — The family of a woman who was found dead in a police officer’s RV has filed a wrongful death suit in the case, their attorney said.
Treasure Hendrix, 35, was found dead Aug. 19 in an RV trailer in the 1500 block of South Western Avenue near Douglass Park, police said. Charlie Bell, the man who owned the RV, has since resigned from the Chicago Police Department. He has not been charged in connection to Hendrix’s death.
On Wednesday, Hendrix’s family filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Bell, according to a news release from Gregory E. Kulis & Associates, the firm representing the family.
Bell was the last person to see Hendrix alive, and he was the person who found her unresponsive the next morning, according to an autopsy report.
An autopsy found Hendrix died of an accidental drug overdose. But her family and friends have repeatedly said they have questions surrounding the circumstances of her death and have been met with silence from investigators.
“As is tradition, the Chicago Police Department investigated its own,” according to the law firm. “The family of Treasure Hendrix questions this all.”
The autopsy found Hendrix had alcohol, cocaine, fentanyl, meth and MDMA in her system at the time of her death. But in November — when Hendrix’s family held a march in her honor — Tracey Maxey, Hendrix’s aunt, said Treasure drank but didn’t do hard drugs.
“She also had bruises on her face and swollen lips, like if she hit something or something hit her … She didn’t do that to herself,” Tracey Maxey said.
A Police Department spokesperson previously said “there is an open investigation into the allegations made by” Hendrix’s family.
The department did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Bell could not be reached for comment.
“We want to see justice for her,” Ald. Jason Ervin (28th), whose ward includes the parking lot where Hendrix’s body was found, said Wednesday. “The process needs to play out, but we definitely want to see justice for her and her family.”
Bell told a detective he met with Hendrix at 2 p.m. Aug. 18 at Parlor Pizza, 108 N. Green St., for food and a few drinks, according to her autopsy report. He said she left at 4 p.m. to meet a friend.
But video from the restaurant shows Hendrix and the former officer arriving at 4:03 p.m. and leaving 41 minutes later, according to the report.
Bell told the investigator Hendrix called him about 9 p.m. the same day, asking to come over, according to the report. Bell agreed, and Hendrix arrived at his RV about 11 p.m., “visibly drunk and high,” he told the detective, according to the report.
Bell told the investigator he lists his home on Airbnb and sleeps in the RV when it’s occupied. He parks the RV in a lot near the Cinespace campus.
A photo of Hendrix’s car shows it arrived about 9:47 p.m. and did not leave, according to the report.
Bell told the investigator he let Hendrix sleep in a back bed of the RV while he slept in another part of the vehicle, according to the report.
Bell woke up about 8:30 a.m. Aug. 19 and found Hendrix “unresponsive,” according to the report. He told the investigator he performed chest compressions on Hendrix until paramedics arrived, but she was pronounced dead at the scene.
Bell told the detective he and Hendrix had been friends for several years and would get together occasionally for drinks, according to the report. He said he had put money into Hendrix’s bank account to help her out, according to the report.
Hendrix had a history of drinking and using narcotics, the former officer told investigators, and he’d had a sexual relationship with her in the past, according to the report.