CPD Moves to Fire 7 Cops for Lying about Davis Shooting
The Chicago Police department this week recommended firing seven officers for lying about the Laquan McDonald police shooting, according to The Washington Post. The officers made misleading statements to supervisors about McDonald’s behavior prior to the shooting, alleging amongst other things that McDonald lunged at officers with a knife before a police officer shot him. Police video that the department released after over a year of investigation showed that McDonald did not in fact lunge at officers. The department has relieved these officers of their police powers pending the review of the termination recommendation by the Chicago Police Board.
Terminations Come After Chicago Chief Inspector Recommendations
The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Officer Jason Van Dyke, who shot McDonald 16 times, is among the seven officers whose termination Superintendent Eddie Johnson has requested. The police dashboard camera video of the shooting shows that Van Dyke continued shooting McDonald even after McDonald fell to the ground. McDonald died of the gunshot wounds. Supt. Johnson is acting in response to a recommendation from the Chicago Inspector General that ten Chicago Police Department officers lose their jobs. Of the ten, two are already retired. The department disagrees with the Inspector General that the tenth officer should lose his job. The department is moving to terminate the officers based on their alleged violations of Rule 14, which forbids Chicago cops from giving false reports. Prosecutors charged Van Dyke with murder in November of last year.
Plaintiffs in Civil Suits Against Police Can Discover Video Evidence
If someone has suffered police brutality or misconduct in Illinois, they can sue the officer and their department for false arrest, assault, or other kinds of torts. But how can you prove that the officer broke the rules? In many cases it seems like it would come down to your word against that of one or more police officers. Since police officers tend to back up each other’s stories, especially in Chicago, it might seem hard to prove what really happened. It may be possible, though, if you can get the police video of the incident. During the discovery phase of a lawsuit, your lawyer can ask the court to require the police to provide access to evidence that includes video footage from police dashboard cameras and body cameras. This video might show a different side of events than the one given by the officers.
Davis Family Could Have Uncovered Shooting Video
In the Laquan Davis case, a report from CBS Chicago explains that the City of Chicago settled any possible wrongful death claim by Davis’ family with a $5 million settlement. One of the conditions of the settlement was that the video would remain secret for a year. If a wrongful death lawsuit had gone to court, however, the Davis family attorney would have had the chance to request discovery of any video documentation of the incident. If the video had gone before a jury, they almost certainly would have found that the officers lacked any reasonable fear for their lives that would have justified the use of force that killed Laquan Davis.
Contact a Chicago Criminal Appeals Attorney
If you or someone you know has been the victim of police misconduct, you need expert legal assistance. Get in touch with an experienced civil rights attorney at Barney & Hourihane in Chicago today to get the justice you deserve.
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