In the weeks since the release of a video showing the fatal police shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald was released, there have been questions as to why officers didn’t use a Taser to subdue McDonald rather than deadly force.
Radio calls obtained by NBC5 through a Freedom of Information Act request Wednesday reveal that the question was also asked just moments before the shooting.
“Someone have a Taser?" an officer radioed from the scene. "This guy is walking away but he’s got a knife in hand."
An officer responds that there there was one coming from Mulligan and Archer.
A dispatcher then replies, asking if any officers closer to the area who had a Taser could “help out.”
McDonald who was allegedly breaking into vehicles at a South Side trucking yard while armed with a knife, was fatally shot by an officer 16 times on Oct. 20, 2014. Dashcam video appeared to show McDonald walking away from officers before he was shot.
It’s not clear from the radio calls whether any officers were at the scene with a Taser before McDonald was shot. But within seven minutes of the initial radio call, McDonald was shot.
The officer involved in the shooting was charged with first-degree murder last month. The dashcam video’s release has prompted the firing of former Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy and sparked a series of protests throughout the city.