A lawyer for Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke plans to again ask a Cook County judge for access to Laquan McDonald’s juvenile court records even though they’ve been rejected twice already.
Defense attorney Daniel Herbert on Wednesday told Judge Vincent Gaughan he is going to ask Judge Patricia Martin to reconsider her past decisions.
In October, Martin, the presiding judge of the child protection division of the Juvenile Court, rejected Van Dyke’s defense team’s request for the second time. She had already ruled against giving the lawyers the files in August.
The defense attorneys contend they needed McDonald’s juvenile records to prepare for Van Dyke’s pending trial.
Van Dyke, 38, is accused to shooting 17-year-old McDonald 16 times in October 2014.
In September, Van Dyke’s lawyers made a separate request to Gaughan to see McDonald’s private files; Gaughan is presiding over the officer’s murder case.
Gaughan has asked the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services to turn over McDonald’s juvenile court records so he can determine if they are relevant to the officer’s trial. Gaughan has not yet announced his findings.
Van Dyke’s next court appearance before Gaughan is Dec. 8.
McDonald’s juvenile court records, usually confidential, were made available to the Chicago Sun-Times and other media organizations late last year after the graphic dashcam video of McDonald’s death was made public.
Meanwhile, Gaughan on Wednesday refused to give Independent Police Review Authority files on Van Dyke to attorney Jon Erickson, who is representing Ronald Johnson’s mother, Dorothy Holmes, in a federal civil rights lawsuit against the city.
Johnson was killed eight days before McDonald. The 25-year-old man was running away from police in Washington Park when he was shot in the back.
As in McDonald’s case, video footage of the shooting was released by authorities. But State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez said she would not bring charges against the officer who pulled the trigger because she said the footage shows Johnson had a gun.