Dashcam Video Sought of Another Fatal Chicago Police Shooting

Amid the fallout over the fatal police shooting of Laquan McDonald, activists and family members of another young African American killed by a Chicago officer are asking for an investigation.

There are similarities between the deaths of Laquan McDonald and Ronald Johnson, a 25-year-old who died only 8 days before McDonald. The most glaring similarity between the two cases is the dash-cam video of the shooting that the city is fighting to keep hidden from the public.

Police said in a statement at the time of the incident that officers responded to a call of "shots fired" on the 5300 block of South King Dr. on Oct. 12, 2014. When police arrived at the scene, they saw a man who fit the description of the offender.

Police said that when officers approached the man, he fled the scene on foot. During the pursuit, the man "pointed his weapon in the direction of the pursuing officers."

"As a result of this action, an officer discharged his weapon striking the offender," police said in the statement. The man was taken to an area hospital where he was pronounced dead.

A weapon was recovered from the scene, police said in the statement. There were no reported injuries to officers.

Although the video has not been released by the city, the Johnson family and attorney Michael Oppenheimer have viewed the dash-cam video. There is no audio on it – even though the videos typically have sound. There was also no audio on the dash-cam video from the fatal shooting of McDonald.

Johnson's mother Dorothy Holmes believes the dash-cam video of her son's death will clear his name.

"He didn't have a gun in his hand because I also have seen the video," Holmes said. "I looked at it twice."

Oppenheimer said Johnson was riding in a car with friends when they were stopped by police. Johnson got out of the car and ran.

"As he was running, other police officers chased him," Oppenheimer said. "Nobody fired their weapons until George Hernandez pulled up in a car, got out and drew his weapon and fired five shots at the back of Ronald Johnson."

Oppenheimer says officer George Hernandez pulled up in an unmarked police vehicle with his gun drawn. He added that within two seconds, Hernandez shot Johnson as he was running away.

Hernandez said at the time that he felt threatened, city records show. He was placed on desk duty following the shooting, according to Oppenheimer.

"You can clearly see his hands in the video. He is running what I would term to be straight ahead," Oppenheimer said. "He never turns. He never points. And there is nothing in his hand."

Oppenheimer filed a lawsuit to have the dash-cam video released – after he says the city refused to hand it over. Court records show that Johnson has four prior arrests. Two of the charges were dismissed and the others pled down to misdemeanors.

Meanwhile, Johnson's family has filed a wrongful death lawsuit in federal court.

"It's not going to bring him back," Holmes said. "It's not going to make me happy. I don't want it."

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