A community is calling for action after the Civilian Office of Police Accountability released video and other materials in the shooting death of 13-year-old Adam Toledo by a Chicago police officer.
In the city’s Little Village neighborhood, flowers and candles were placed near 23rd and South Sawyer, with the memorial taking shape near the spot where Toledo was killed 17 days ago.
“He was a great kid. A good friend, too,” one friend said. “I just want everyone to know he was a good kid.”
Toledo’s death sparked calls for a release of body camera footage and other materials, and COPA responded to those calls by releasing the information on Thursday.
Body camera footage shows Toledo running from a Chicago police officer down an alley on March 29. Toledo starts to turn toward the officer, and is in the process of putting his hands up when the officer fires his weapon once, striking the teen in the chest.
It did not appear in video that Toledo was holding a weapon when he was shot. A weapon was discovered behind a fence shortly after he was shot, according to footage released by COPA on Thursday.
He was pronounced dead at the scene.
As reaction continues Thursday night, another of Toledo’s friends said that the video was hard to watch.
“When I saw, I turned it off immediately, because I didn’t want to see my friend like that,” the friend said.
Amara Castillo, a mom in the Little Village neighborhood, says that it was painful to watch the video with her mom and three children.
“’Not all cops are bad.’ That’s what I told my little boy,” she said. “Because now he’s afraid of cops.”
“A little piece of my childhood died inside me,” Christian Armendariz, a resident of Little Village, added.
Some activists are calling for charges to be filed against the police officer who shot Toledo. The COPA investigation, along with a Chicago police investigation, remain ongoing.