Laquan McDonald

Judge to Rule on Release of Video Showing Chicago Officer Shooting Teen 16 Times

A Cook County judge will rule Nov. 18 on a motion to release police dash-cam video showing the fatal shooting of a Chicago teen last year.

LaQuan McDonald, who was 17 at the time of the incident, was shot 16 times by a Chicago police officer on Oct. 20, 2014, prompting investigations by the FBI, the Cook County State's Attorney's Office and the Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA).

Chancery Court Judge Franklin Valderrama heard arguments by Patrick Rocks, representing the Chicago Police Department, who argued the release of the video would harm the ongoing investigation by IPRA and plaintiff's attorney Matt Topic, who said the release "is an issue of significant public interest." 

On the night that McDonald was killed, police responded to a call of a man with a knife. Attorneys for the McDonald family said the 17-year-old was not posing a danger at the time of the shooting and was walking away when the officer, who has not been publicly named, opened fire.

The City of Chicago quickly moved to settle even before a lawsuit was filed. The $5 million settlement was announced in April.

Both sides in court acknowledged the existence of a federal grand jury and FBI probe, though there was no motion from the U.S. Attorney's office or the FBI relating to whether to release the video.

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