Chicago cops hid the video for a year, hoping the issue would just go away. But ongoing protests from the black community and a lawsuit calling for the release of the video brought the murder cover up to an end and forced murder charges against the killer cop.
|Laquan McDonald was shot sixteen times. Most of the bullets entered his back.|
By Justin Glawe
A Chicago police officer who shot a black teenager armed with a knife 16 times last year has been charged with murder, a day before video of the shooting is scheduled to be released.
Jason Van Dyke, a 14-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, has been hit with charges ranging from first degree murder to manslaughter for the Oct. 20, 2014 shooting death of Laquan McDonald.
The indictment by the Cook County state's attorney makes Van Dyke the first police officer in Chicago history to be charged with first-degree murder in an on-duty shooting, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Van Dyke turned himself in to authorities ahead of a 12 p.m. EST bond hearing where he will learn how much his freedom will cost. DNAinfo Chicago reported Tuesday morning that Van Dyke's wife was seeking donations for his bond.
Van Dyke has been the subject of 18 complaints ranging from using racial epithets to excessive force to illegally arresting people, according to personnel records obtained by the Invisible Institute, a police-accountability nonprofit.
The indictment comes a day before dashcam footage of the shooting must be released, according to an order last week by Cook County Judge Franklin Valderrama. The video wasn’t supposed to be released after the city settled with McDonald’s family for $5 million. But a lawsuit filed against police by independent journalist Brandon Smith will show the public what happened.