Laquan McDonald murder: Four Chicago police fired for alleged police shooting coverup

400tmax  iStock

400tmax iStock

A Chicago police panel on Thursday fired four officers over the shooting death of a black teenager, Laquan McDonald, in 2014, a case that highlighted racial tension in the United States' third-largest city.

In a separate case, a judge found three other Chicago police officers not guilty of covering up details of McDonald's killing.

Van Dyke, the officer responsible for McDonald's death, is the first Chicago police officer in decades to be convicted of on-duty murder, as reported October 5 by The Chronicle. Former Detective David March, former Officer Joseph Walsh and Officer Thomas Gaffney had been accused of falsifying police reports to protect Van Dyke.

Four Chicago police officers involved in the 2014 Laquan McDonald case were fired Thursday.

The board found that the cops exaggerated the threat they said was posed by 17-year-old McDonald on the night he was fatally shot by former Officer Jason Van Dyke. The video was released one year after McDonald's death and showed the teen walking away instead of confronting officers, which is what Van Dyke falsely said happened.

It's been almost five years since 17-year-old Laquan McDonald was fatally shot by a Chicago cop, and four cops are just now learning the consequences of their actions in the aftermath of his death.

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"It was their statements that would be used by the investigators to determine whether the fatal shooting of Mr. McDonald was justified - or whether a crime by their fellow officer had been committed", the board wrote.

Sebastian was not found to have filed a false report.

McDonald was carrying a small knife in 2014 when Van Dyke exited his squad vehicle and nearly immediately opened fire.

In January, Van Dyke was sentenced to six years and nine months in prison for the shooting.

Van Dyke was the first Chicago police officer in 50 years to be convicted of murder for an on-duty incident.

The Illinois Supreme Court denied a bid by the state's attorney general and a special prosecutor to resentence Van Dyke. The then police superintendent, Gerry McCarty, was sacked by then-Mayor Rahm Emanuel and the then top prosecutor, Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez, was ousted by voters.

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