Bond for Chicago police officer who fatally shot Laquan McDonald set at $1.5 … | us news

Bond for Chicago police officer who fatally shot Laquan McDonald set at $1.5 …

1 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Bond set at $1.5M for Chicago officer who fatally shot teen.

A judge on Monday set bond at $1.5 million for a white Chicago police officer charged with murder after a squad car video caught him fatally shooting a black teenager 16 times. While sitting on desk duty waiting to be indicted for over year, Jason Van Dyke, charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of Laquan McDonald, made nearly $80,000 according to the Better Government Association’s payroll database. This kind of fleecing of taxpayers dollars is reprehensible and only adds salt to an already open wound — especially in the poorest of communities that are being stoked by fear of the very people who have been sworn to serve and protect them. The same day, authorities released a dashcam video that shows McDonald — armed with a knife and walking down a street on the city’s southwest side — being shot repeatedly by the 37-year-old Van Dyke. On Tuesday, Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez said she had decided a few weeks earlier to charge Van Dyke with murder and was planning to announce charges in a month.

But knowing the intense public anger that the sight of the “chilling” video would generate, she announced the charges before the video’s release in an effort to encourage calm. Van Dyke’s attorney last week reassured the judge that Van Dyke is not a flight risk, explaining that he has deep ties to the community, lives with his wife and two children in Chicago and does not possess a passport. The video is at odds with a narrative pushed by the department and police union that McDonald, who prosecutors said had PCP in his system and was holding a knife with a 3-inch blade, lunged at Van Dyke before he opened fire.

After announcing the charges against Van Dyke last week, Alvarez said her office was “meticulous” in putting together the case and was hoping to announce the charges jointly with federal prosecutors who were conducting a parallel investigation. She said she decided to move forward with the charge last week out of concern for public safety after the a Cook County Circuit Court judge ordered the city to release the video after being sued by a journalist for violating open record laws. The largest and most disruptive protest blocked off part of Michigan Avenue in the downtown shopping district known as the Magnificent Mile on Black Friday, preventing access to big name stores on what is traditionally the busiest shopping day of the year. Garcia posed a strong challenge to Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s reelection effort earlier this year, forcing the incumbent into the first mayoral runoff in city history.

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