Cedrick Chatman, a 17-year-old black male, was shot to death by a Chicago police officer in January of 2013.
Now, almost three years later, the city of Chicago refuses to release police video of the incident.
Police claim that Chatman, a carjacking suspect, pointed a dark object at police, making them fear for their lives.
Chatman’s family believes that is a lie.
Chicago city attorneys believe releasing the video could “inflame the public and jeopardize a fair trial,” according to the Chicago Tribune.
There have been multiple Freedom of Information Act attempts by the family and the media to obtain the video, but every request has been denied.
In fact, CBS Chicago reports that last month, another judge denied the family’s request to release the video, and they have asked another judge to overrule the declining judge.
City attorneys’ argue that releasing the video would hinder a fair jury selection in the lawsuit trial. The Chatman family has filed a federal lawsuit against the officers involved, the city, and the Chicago Police Department.
U.S. District Judge Robert Gettleman stated he will rule in January whether the video should be released.
It is rather interesting to note that Rahm Emanuel recently said that the delay in the Laquan McDonald shooting excelled public distrust in the Chicago Police Department.
Yet Chicago’s city attorneys continue to excel that mistrust by fighting the release of the Chatman shooting video.
“Every day that we held on to the [Laquan McDonald] video contributed to the public’s distrust, and that needs to change,” Emanuel said.
Officer Kevin Fry shot Chatman because he thought Chatman had a gun during a foot chase, after he stole a Dodge Charger.
But Chatman had no weapon.
According to Chatman family attorney, Brian Coffman:
“The video shows Mr. Chatman running away as fast as he possibly can in a clear sunny blue day, just like today. He’s not carrying any type of weapon in his hand. He’s not taking any types of movements towards the officers.”
Upon being notified about the constant delays and denials of the Chatman video, Mayor Emanuel said,
“The city is facing a defining moment on the issue of crime and policing, and even the larger issue of truth, justice, and race.”
Chicago’s Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA) determined the shooting to be justified. The District Attorney’s office opted to not file charges on Officer Fry. Chicago IPRA supervisor Lorenzo Davis was fired for citing the shooting was unjustified, he is now filing a lawsuit against the Chicago IPRA.
“He should not have used deadly force to stop Mr. Chatman. He should have exhausted all means available to catch Mr. Chatman,” said Davis.