I'm DeAngelo Bester, and I run the Workers Center for Racial Justice in Chicago. The City of Chicago has just released, under court order, the dashcam video from the brutal killing of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald by a Chicago police officer—and it's as bad as we all expected.
At the same time as they released the video, the county prosecutor announced she'd be pursuing charges against McDonald's killer, Officer Jason Van Dyke. Unfortunately, these are charges that should have been filed a year ago, and that's why we started this petition calling for real structural changes and oversight in the Chicago justice system, which says:
A nearby restaurant caught Laquan's murder on security video—but that video was erased by police.1 Now, with the release of devastating video evidence from police dashboard cameras, it is clear that the police lied and Laquan did not act in an aggressive manner.
More than a year after the killing, even with full evidence, Chicago city officials did nothing but reassign Officer Van Dyke to desk duty. But now that sustained grassroots mobilizations forced the city to release the video, city officials are finally charging Van Dyke as they try to blunt the expected outrage.
Black Chicagoans face extreme levels of anti-Black violence and terrorism at the hands of the police. Earlier this year, a lawsuit was filed against the Chicago Police Department citing instance of police brutality and a secret detention center. And this is the same city where off-duty Officer Dante Servin shot and murdered Rekia Boyd while she was walking with a group of her friends.
That's why, in addition to the resignations and special prosecutor appointment, we're demanding truly independent investigation conducted by the United Nations and the Organization of American States into the violation of the human rights of Black people in Cook County and the city of Chicago.
1. "Alvarez Addresses Missing Minutes From Security Video in Laquan McDonald Case," NBC Chicago, November 24, 2015
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