Supt. McCarthy: Off-duty officer who killed Rekia Boyd should be fired

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Chicago Police Officer Dante Servin, in sunglasses, leaves Criminal Court at 26th & California after being found not guilty of involuntary manslaughter. | Brian Jackson/for Sun-Times Media

Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy will recommend that the Chicago Police Board fire Dante Servin, the officer acquitted in the 2012 shooting death of Rekia Boyd, less than a year after Chicago’s top cop said the officer should never have been charged in the 22-year-old’s death.

“After considerable deliberation, I have come to the conclusion that Officer Dante Servin showed incredibly poor judgement in his efforts to intervene in a low-level dispute while off-duty,” McCarthy said in a prepared statement.

McCarthy will send the formal charges justifying the termination to the Chicago Police Board, according to the statement.

“His actions tragically resulted in the death of an innocent young woman and an unthinkable loss for a Chicago family and community,” McCarthy said of Servin. “In the end, CPD has rules that we all must live by. Officer Servin violated those rules and he’s going to be held accountable for that.”

In April, McCarthy said the charge brought against Servin — involuntary manslaughter — should never have been filed.

“Because of the way that played out, what you didn’t know is the defense and all the intricate details of that particular event. . . . If the details of that case were known, I think it would be a lot clearer” why no charges were warranted, McCarthy said.

In September, the Independent Police Review Authority — the city agency that investigates all police shootings — recommended Servin be fired.

On March 22, 2012, Servin argued with a group of people in the Douglas Park neighborhood on the West Side, authorities said. He said a man pulled a gun and approached his car. Servin said he was in fear for his life and fired over his shoulder at the group. Boyd was struck in the head and died the next day.

The city settled a wrongful-death lawsuit with Boyd’s family for $4.5 million but admitted no liability. The man whom Servin said was armed only possessed a cellphone, authorities said.

The Cook County state’s attorney charged Servin with involuntary manslaughter, but he was acquitted. Since the acquittal, civil rights groups have protested at Chicago Police Board hearings, calling for the city to fire Servin.

McCarthy’s announcement that he will recommend firing Servin comes two days before the city must release a dash cam video of Officer Jason Van Dyke fatally shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald on the Southwest Side in 2014.

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