The Chicago police officer who shot Laquan McDonald 16 times was charged Tuesday in the teen’s death, according to ABC 7.
Police officer Jason Van Dyke, who is White, was charged with first-degree murder Tuesday morning and is the “first on-duty Chicago police officer to be charged with that crime,” the report says.
Lawyers for McDonald’s family said the 17-year-old was walking away when Van Dyke allegedly shot him in the chest, the back of his arms, and right legs. Police claim McDonald had a knife and refused to drop it, prompting the officer to shoot him 16 times. Police also claim he had PCP in his system and was acting “erratically.”
McDonald’s family received a $5 million settlement from the city in April 2015.
Meanwhile, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and community leaders expect protests Wednesday when the city plans to release a disturbing video of the October 2014 deadly encounter between Van Dyke and McDonald, according to The Huffington Post.
Emanuel called in community leaders and pastors for meetings on Monday in an effort to prepare for public reaction to the video.
The footage from a patrol car dashboard camera is being released as a result of a judicial order stemming from a lawsuit brought by a freelance journalist.
The video shows Laquan McDonald, 17, being shot 16 times on Oct. 20 last year by police officer Jason Van Dyke, who is white. Van Dyke is on administrative duty while state and federal prosecutors investigate.
Protests over police actions have shined a spotlight on questionable law enforcement tactics over the past year and a half. While the charges against Van Dyke represent a grand departure from business as usual, a conviction would show a willingness to finally address police brutality.
SOURCE: ABC 7 | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty
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