Laquan McDonald: Chicago Police Officers Acquitted of Making an attempt to Cowl up Capturing of Black Teenager

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Laquan McDonald: Chicago Police Officers Acquitted of Making an attempt to Cowl up Capturing of Black Teenager

Greater than 5 years after the deadly taking pictures of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, three Chicago law enforcement officials have been acquitted of accusations that they conspired to cowl up particulars of the incident.

On Thursday, Prepare dinner County Decide Domenica Stephenson discovered former Detective David March, former officer Joseph Walsh and suspended officer Thomas Gaffney not responsible of committing conspiracy, obstruction of justice and official misconduct. 

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Stephenson stated prosecutors had failed to fulfill the burden of proof to show a coordinated conspiracy to cowl up the deadly taking pictures. The prosecution had argued that March, Walsh and Gaffney had filed paperwork that wrongly portrayed McDonald as an aggressor within the October 20, 2014 incident that noticed {the teenager} fatally shot by their fellow officer, Jason Van Dyke. 

Prosecutors stated that the actual fact all three officers appeared to inform the identical story advised that the three officers had conspired to weave collectively an account that may justify the 17-year-old’s demise and spare Van Dyke, who’s white, from dealing with the scrutiny of a legal investigation. 

On the evening McDonald was killed, police had obtained studies of a younger black man attempting to interrupt into automobiles. When officers arrived on the scene, they encountered McDonald, who they stated had a folding knife in his hand.

Arriving on the scene, Van Dyke obtained out of his automobile and inside a 15-second span, fired 16 pictures at McDonald. Van Dyke had claimed that McDonald had been swinging the folding knife in an “aggressive exaggerated method,” a declare that was supported by his fellow officers.

However dashcam video launched in November 2015, a couple of yr after the incident, introduced the 4 officers’ accounts into query, showing to point out a unique scene than the one police had described.

Within the video, McDonald could be seen operating down the road, together with his again to the digicam, as police arrive in automobiles from behind him and beside him. 

As officers, together with Van Dyke, exit their automobiles, the 17-year-old slows to a stroll earlier than taking a number of steps away from officers. That’s when Van Dyke shoots him, firing 16 pictures on the teenager, in response to the coroner’s report.

On the day the footage was launched, Van Dyke was arrested and charged with first-degree homicide, in addition to different firearm offenses, as protests broke out throughout Chicago, with many demanding to know why the dashcam video had been withheld for greater than a yr and accusing police of mendacity about McDonald’s demise.

Following his trial in October, Van Dyke was discovered responsible of second-degree homicide in addition to 16 counts for aggravated battery, with the previous officer receiving one depend for each shot he fired. He’s scheduled to be sentenced on Friday.

Laquan McDonald: Chicago Police Officers Acquitted of Trying to Cover up Shooting of Black Teenager Laquan McDonald was 17 years outdated when he was fatally shot 16 instances by Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke. On Friday afternoon, the jury discovered Van Dyke responsible of second-degree homicide. Household photograph

Earlier than saying her resolution on Van Dyke’s former colleagues on Thursday, Decide Stephenson advised the court docket that it might be unfair to match the three officers’ studies to the dashcam video of McDonald’s ultimate moments, in response to the BBC.

“We can’t now view the actions of the officers with the advantage of hindsight as to what they need to have believed,” she stated. “McDonald was an armed offender who ignored instructions to drop the knife.” 

Upon listening to the ruling, McDonald’s household expressed outrage and grief, with the slain teenager’s great-uncle, Rev. Marvin Hunter, condemning the legal justice system as “corrupt.” 

“This isn’t justice,” he stated exterior the court docket, in response to the BBC. “I’m shocked…that this choose would take it upon herself to make all the nation know what I’ve identified on a regular basis, that justice is justice for everyone however African Individuals on this county.” 

Laquan McDonald: Chicago Police Officers Acquitted of Trying to Cover up Shooting of Black Teenager Demonstrators protest the deadly police taking pictures of Laquan McDonald, December 18, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. Joshua Lott/Getty

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