Lawyers representing the family of Maurice Granton Jr. gathered outside Chicago Police Department headquarters Saturday afternoon to demand the release of body camera footage days after an officer fatally shot the 24-year-old in the back last week in Bronzeville.
Attorneys Antonio Romanucci and Andrew Stroth said the video will factor into the family’s decision on whether to file a lawsuit.
“We want the bodycam, we want any pod cameras, we want any other private security camera detail released so that the public and the mother of these children, the family, can determine for themselves, ‘Was there really an armed confrontation?’ ” Romanucci said, adding that “many, many witnesses on the street said Maurice did not have a gun.”
Police officials allege Granton ran from tactical officers who tried to stop him during a narcotics investigation Wednesday night. An officer opened fire during an “armed encounter” when Granton pulled a gun, according to a police statement.
The Civilian Office of Police Accountability, which is investigating the shooting, said the officer fired three shots. The Cook County medical examiner’s office ruled that Granton died of a gunshot wound to the back.
The day after, police released surveillance video allegedly showing Granton holding a gun while hanging out in the area before the shooting. Police have also released a photo of the gun they say was recovered from Granton at the scene.
Romanucci called the video release “disturbing” and said “If they’re going to release evidence freely, and make it accessible to the public via Twitter, then we demand full transparency.”
COPA generally releases video evidence within 60 days.
“Our sincerest condolences go out to the Granton family as the loss of any life is tragic,” CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said. “But it is unlawful to pull a weapon on any citizen of Chicago, especially a police officer working to safeguard a community.”
Granton’s family and friends have maintained his innocence and questioned the police narrative. The mother of his two daughters, Latayshia Shaw, said Saturday that life without Granton was hard, especially for their eldest, 1-year-old Miracle.
“I have only good memories. He was a really good father and an amazing person,” Shaw said. “He was at the wrong place at the wrong time. It happened to the wrong person.”