Laquan McDonald Cover Up Case of 3 Chicago Cops Will Go On, Judge Rules - NBC Chicago

Laquan McDonald Cover Up Case of 3 Chicago Cops Will Go On, Judge Rules

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Van Dyke Conspiracy Case

    Was there a police conspiracy to cover up the murder of Laquan McDonald?Three Chicago police officers are accused of trying to cover up the deadly shooting. The case went before a Chicago judge on Monday. NBC 5's Charlie Wojciechowski has the latest.

    (Published Monday, Nov. 5, 2018)

    Was there a police conspiracy to cover up the murder of Laquan McDonald?

    Three Chicago police officers are accused of trying to cover up the deadly shooting. The case went before a Chicago judge on Monday.

    At a contentious hearing last week, the defendants called the case against them a sham and asked the judge to throw out the charges.

    She carefully took apart their arguments Monday and let them know they will stand trial in her courtroom.

    It was the legal equivalent of a Hail Mary pass, a last minute motion asking a judge to dismiss the charges or limit the testimony in the case against officers Joseph Walsh and Thomas Gaffney and Detective David March who are accused of lying in their police reports about the night McDonald was killed.

    But Monday afternoon, Judge Domenica Stephenson ruled the case will go forward. The three officers, all of whom were present in court, are accused filing false accounts of the October 2014 shooting to protect Jason Van Dyke from being accused of any wrongdoing.

    The special prosecutor also accused the three of failing to interview witnesses who might have contradicted their faulty version of events.

    Van Dyke was convicted of second degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery last month.

    Now activists say the community will be tracking this case as well.

    "It's been a long time coming to get justice for Laquann McDonald," activist Will Calloway said. "We are definitely pleased with the judge’s decision to deny all the motions from the defendants and the co-conspirators in this case."

    Both Walsh and marsh are longer on the force. Gaffney has been suspended and remains on desk duty.

    But will Calloway says the fact that they are on trial sends a message about police reform.

    "A profound message that the blue code of silence will not be tolerated in the Chicago Police Department," he said. "We in the community will continue to seek thorough justice for Laquan McDonald."

    There is is still one more status hearing set for this case, but the trial itself is expected to begin Nov. 26.

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