Questions Remain After Firing of Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy

The dismissal of Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy closed the door on his four and a half years as Chicago’s top cop but left open questions first raised by NBC 5 Investigates. Chief among the questions: why was there no audio on any of the dash cam video; and what happened to the 86 missing minutes from the surveillance cameras at the Burger King just yards away from where LaQuan McDonald was shot?

As we first reported last May the district manager for Burger King said Chicago police deleted the surveillance files. In July we reported the dash cams contained no audio.

Mayor Emanuel said an answer to those and other questions will have to come from an on-going federal investigation.

“Questions like that exist like the Burger King, the conduct at that point by the police department other things that the police department uh, took afterwards, all that is being looked at by the Justice Department,” he said at a packed news conference.

As we previously reported, on the night of the shooting an FOP spokesman said Laquan McDonald posed a serious threat.

“He wouldn’t drop the knife and he was coming at the officer,” Pat Camden said. “He is a very serious threat to the officers and he leaves them no choice at that point but to defend themselves.”

Hours later a Chicago Police Department press release echoed that stating McDonald was warned but “continued to approach the officers.”

McCarthy, in an appearance on NBC5 News just hours before he was asked to resign, said within hours after the shooting he knew the FOP and police version to be untrue.

“My greatest concern was the fact that information came from elsewhere that said that he had lunged at the officers, which we knew not to be the case,” he said. “And that was what I was trying to fix behind the scenes with the FOP, quite frankly.”

McCarthy said he saw the dash cam video also immediately, but Mayor Emanuel took 13 months to view the videotape showing officer Jason Van Dyke shooting McDonald.

Asked how he engenders trust after waiting so long to view the video he replied, “I don’t look at material in a criminal investigation, any of them. And if I had looked at that video your question before over the next seven months is why do I get to see it and nobody else does, so I would see it when everybody else would see it.”

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