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  • Rhymes Media Group

RMG News Moment: Three Chicago Cops Charged with Conspiracy to cover up the Murder of Laquan McDonal

Video includes graphic images, Viewer discretion is advised. This video is provided courtesy of Chicago News and it shows Officer Jason Van Dyke shooting McDonald 16 times on October 20, 2014. This incident, and the subsequent release of this video approximately a year ago, caused great outrage in Chicago and around the nation. Today, three Chicago Cops have charged with conspiracy to cover up the murder of Laquan McDonald. The indictment named Det. David March and officers Joseph Walsh and Thomas Gaffney as the leaders of a conspiracy to obstruct justice in the McDonald case. This indictment comes several months after a US Department of Justice investigation concluded that the Chicago Police Department engaged in a pattern of unlawful force we found resulted from a collection of poor police practices that our investigation indicated are used routinely within CPD. We found that officers engage in tactically unsound and unnecessary foot pursuits, and that these foot pursuits too often end with officers unreasonably shooting someone—including unarmed individuals. We found that officers shoot at vehicles without justification and in contradiction to CPD policy. We found further that officers exhibit poor discipline when discharging their weapons and engage in tactics that endanger themselves and public safety, including failing to await backup when they safely could and should; using unsound tactics in approaching vehicles; and using their own vehicles in a manner that is dangerous. These are issues that can and must be better addressed through training, accountability and ultimately cultural change. The report further stated: among the most egregious uses of deadly force we reviewed were incidents in which CPD officers shot at suspects who presented no immediate threat. CPD’s use of less-lethal force also contributes to the pattern of unlawful conduct we found. We reviewed instances of CPD using less-lethal force, often Tasers, including in drive-stun mode, against people who posed no threat, and using unreasonable retaliatory force and unreasonable force against children. We found also that CPD officers use force against people in mental health crisis where force might have been avoided. The arraignment for the three conspirators is July 10th. Stay tuned to Rhymes Media Group for further developments and details.

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