The Civilian Office of Police Accountability apparently allowed the family of slain 13-year-old Adam Toledo to view video of his March 29 killing by a Chicago Police officer, COPA announced in a statement Tuesday. The video is not being released to the public immediately per the family’s request, the statement said.
“The experience was extremely difficult and heartbreaking for everyone present and especially for Adam’s family,” attorneys representing the Toledo family said in a statement Tuesday.
Adam’s family left the COPA building through the rear exit about 7:30 p.m. and filed into two SUVs before leaving the parking lot without addressing the media.
“COPA has advised family representatives that, while it is acutely sensitive to the family’s grief and their desire to avoid public release of materials related to Adam’s tragic death, COPA is mandated to comply with the City’s Video Release Policy,” COPA said in the statement.
COPA said it’s in the “very early” stages of the investigation and interviews of witnesses, civilians and police officers are ongoing. Investigators have obtained police reports, ShotSpotter, OEMC transmission and 911 call, audio recordings and other evidence, according to the statement.
“COPA is committed to completing a full, thorough and objective investigation of the entire incident which includes not only the officer’s use of deadly force but also the actions of other involved officers leading up to and following the deadly shooting to determine whether each officers’ actions complied with the Department policy directives and training,” the statement said.
Attorneys representing the Toledo family said in the statement they are conducting their own investigation as they “seek justice for Adam and his family.”
“We are meeting with representatives of the city of Chicago and will have no further comment on the facts in this case at this time,” the lawyer’s statement said.
The attorneys said they “want to thank COPA for giving the Toledo family the opportunity to review body camera video and other evidence before its public release,” and expressed “the family’s deep appreciation for the grace and respect that the community, Chicago authorities, and the media have shown for their suffering as they mourn the loss of their child.”
They requested respect for the family’s privacy and also thanked members of the Latino community for remaining peaceful in protests.
“Adam’s memory can best be honored by refraining from violence and working constructively for reform,” the attorneys said.