Chicago police killing of unarmed teen unjustified, fired investigator says

9 Dec 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

Chicago has tried police reform before. How it can do better this time..

Chicago — The pressure on the Chicago Police Department and City Hall was mounting. A federal judge will be asked Wednesday to allow the release of yet another video that reportedly depicts the fatal shooting of a black teenager by Chicago police.A Chicago man who was driving a stolen vehicle when it slammed into a tree early Sunday in north suburban Highland Park, leaving his two passengers dead, was ordered held on a $1 million bond Tuesday. District Judge Matthew Kennelly ordered David O’Callaghan’s lawyer in October to pay $63,000 in attorney’s fees and $5,618 in expenses to counsel for former El Rukn gang member Nathson Fields.

Magistrate Judge Geraldine Brown has already turned down a request from Cedrick Chatman’s family to release video of the 17-year-old’s Jan. 7, 2013, shooting death. CHICAGO (08dec15) It is hard to say how many gruesome murders, under the color of law, remain hidden in Chicago but at least one more will make news when the family of Cedrick Chatman goes to federal court tomorrow. Now, eight years later, as two videos of two fatal police shootings have once again created a furor that has cost the police superintendent his job, a wide array of critics are saying IPRA is primarily to blame for the city’s continued problems.

But in an order Tuesday, Kennelly wrote that lawyers have “resolved the issues” raised by O’Callaghan’s testimony and asked him to vacate the October order. Lorenzo Davis, a former investigator for the so-called Independent Police Review Authority claims he was fired by former director Scott Ando because he refused to cover up 3 police murders. The organization founded to clean up the police has instead become the opposite – an agency that shields police from legal scrutiny, these critics say. And in the nearly three weeks that have passed, Mayor Rahm Emanuel has also fired his police superintendent and replaced the head of the agency charged with investigating police shootings. On Monday, the state attorney for Cook County criticized IPRA for taking more than seven months to give her evidence she requested for her investigation of the shooting of Ronald Johnson III.

After he was cleared, a long-missing police file connected to his case was “discovered” buried in an old filing cabinet in the basement of a South Side police station. Students are advised to stay alert while walking alone and if confronted by a person with a gun, follow their demands and run away as soon as it’s safe.

Police and prosecutors for years denied the file existed; Fields’ lawyers claimed it was hidden on purpose because it held evidence that might have cleared Fields far sooner. The other passenger died after being taken to Evanston Hospital and has not yet been positively identified, according to police and the Cook County medical examiner’s office.

The first attempt to take the lawsuit to trial ended in a mistrial when O’Callaghan violated a court order by referring to “terrorism cases” during his testimony. District Judge Robert Gettleman on Dec. 9 to overrule Brown.” Lorenzo Davis, himself a 23 year veteran of the CPD, told the Chicago Sun-Times that Chatman’s shooting death was an “unnecessary use of deadly force” — and a murder. But for deeper change, more tough decisions will need to be made this time around, observers say, though there is hope that the persistence of the Black Lives Matter movement and a federal investigation could keep the issue in the spotlight. “IPRA is a serious problem,” says Craig Futterman, a professor at the University of Chicago Law School who in 2007 testified at City Hall about the need to create an agency like IPRA. “I used to think it was ineffective, but I think that’s really wrong,” he adds. Once such a video is released, the judge said, “it becomes really hard to put the cat back into the bag.” “It is in this day of social media impossible to get video off the Internet once it’s on,” Brown said. “It’s impossible. But the new authority, he says, “inherited the exact same staff [from OPS] with the same issues of bias that had been whitewashing these complaints all of these years.” A recent data analysis by The Chicago Tribune found that of the 409 police shootings IPRA has investigated since its formation, two have been found to be unjustified, both involving off-duty officers.

He told jurors he had no deal with authorities for a significant reduction in his sentence in return for his testimony and that he did not expect to get out of prison until 2026. Among those who had urged the parole board to release him were O’Callaghan, several other cops, Assistant Cook County State’s Attorney Brian Sexton and Assistant U.S.

Chicago police officials confirmed last week that the officers involved in Chatman’s death were on full-duty status and assigned to the Bureau of Patrol. Johnson Monday, has renewed calls for changes in how the police department investigates officers’ use of force. “The city is at a crossroads today.

Chicago Police Officers Lou Toth and Kevin Fry found Chatman in a gray Dodge Charger at East 75th and Jeffrey, pulled over and jumped out with weapons drawn, records show. And there can be no doubt that change is in the air and on the horizon,” she said. “Yet, the mission of IPRA will remain the same: thorough, fair and timely investigation of police officer misconduct. All of that is critical to restoring the trust that is essential to providing the level of public safety that all of our communities deserve.” The lawyer for Johnson’s family, Michael Oppenheimer, says that process begins with acknowledging that the IPRA’s investigation into the shooting is compromised. Officers claimed Chatman made a “slight” turn of his upper torso to the right, prompting Fry to fire his weapon four times, according to the lawsuit. Chicago might look to the Office of the Inspector General at the New York City Police Department as an alternative to IPRA, says criminologist Samuel Walker.

Daly pointed out that Chatman reached to the floor of the Charger before fleeing, and he had a black object in his hand that turned out to be an iPhone box. Prosecutors charged Chatman’s accomplices in the alleged carjacking, Akeem Clarke and Martel Odum, with Chatman’s murder for their role in the events that triggered his fatal shooting.

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