4 cops at Laquan McDonald shooting suspended for faulty dashcams

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In this Oct. 20, 2014 frame from dash-cam video provided by the Chicago Police Department, Laquan McDonald, right, walks down the street moments before being fatally shot by CPD officer Jason Van Dyke sixteen times in Chicago. | Chicago Police Department via AP file photo

Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson has suspended four officers who were at the scene of the Laquan McDonald shooting in 2014 for not ensuring their dashboard cameras were working properly.

In a quarterly report released Wednesday, the Office of Chicago’s Inspector General said it “issued findings and disciplinary recommendations of suspension for four other officers, on the basis of which the Superintendent issued one-week suspensions for each of the four individuals.”

Chicago Police Department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi confirmed Johnson had suspended the four officers — who were not named — for one week each as punishment for not ensuring their dashboard cameras were working properly on Oct. 20, 2014, when McDonald was shot 16 times by police Officer Jason Van Dyke.

Van Dyke has since been charged with murder, has pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial.

It was not known Wednesday night when the four cops were to serve their suspensions — or specifically how the cameras malfunctioned.

Five dashboard videos taken from different angles at the scene of the McDonald shooting have been released.

None recorded any audio, including the graphic video that shows Van Dyke shooting the 17-year-old as he walked away from police while holding a knife.

Inspector General Joseph Ferguson’s office initially recommended discipline for 11 officers involved in the McDonald case. In November, it recommended discipline of the four additional officers.

Based on those 15 recommendations, Johnson moved to fire five of those cops, including Van Dyke. Their cases are pending before the Chicago Police Board.

Not all those recommended for discipline by the inspector general were formally punished.

In a Dec. 8, 2016, lawsuit, Ferguson wrote, “The Superintendent disagreed with OIG’s findings and disciplinary recommendation respecting one officer and permitted five of 15 to resign or retire prior to formal action on OIG’s findings and discharge recommendations.”

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