The city of Chicago has had a lot of violence in its recent history. Unfortunately, some of this violence has led to police brutality incidents where law enforcement utilizes extreme or deadly force at inappropriate times. One of these situations resulted in a deadly shooting.
Officers dismissed in connection to fatal shooting
The incident initially occurred in 2014. Dashcam videos captured the police actions that took place on the scene.
Multiple officers saw the victim walking down the street with a pocket knife in his hands. At some point shortly afterward, the young man was shot sixteen times in under a minute by one of them. The officer who unloaded the fatal shots was convicted of the killing in a criminal trial for second degree murder and multiple counts of aggravated battery in 2018, but the other officers who were charged for official misconduct and conspiracy had already been acquitted. The local police board just recently voted that these other three officers should be terminated from their positions for trying to cover up the incident and attempts to falsify documents that categorized the teenager as a serious threat. The city’s Fraternal Order of Police had maintained that none of the officers involved had ever done anything wrong, which drew sharp criticism from local politicians and residents. The Chicago police have been accused by these critics as allowing a culture of illegitimate cover ups to exist, and the police superintendent was fired shortly after these allegations were made.
Local news outlets believe that this is the first time a Chicago police officer has ever been criminally convicted for shooting someone while on duty, despite a history of police misconduct in the city.
The possibility of a civil lawsuit
Even after a criminal trial and administrative measures handed down by the city, it is still possible for a victim or their family to contact a police brutality attorney and file a lawsuit. It does not matter if the offending officers have already been terminated from their positions or if they are serving time in jail for their actions.
An excessive use of force lawsuit essentially claims that a person was deprived of their civil rights by someone acting under the authority of the government. This is the most common action used against police officers in civil cases, as they are government employees and they must follow relevant protocols regarding how they interact with suspects without causing unnecessary injuries or harm to the public. When police are captured on video engaged in the kind of behavior described above, plaintiffs may be able to collect large sums of money due to the fact that there is clear evidence of officers disregarding their duties and deliberately causing harm. The resulting criminal convictions from these same incidents provide further evidence that the officer and their department should be held responsible.
Lawyers can provide further information about how to proceed
For help after any incident of police violence in the Chicago area, contact Budin Law Offices. John J. Budin’s firm has been helping injured people since 1990.