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Van Dyke Trial Day 19: Evidence is done; closing arguments Thursday

Jason Van Dyke, Laquan McDonald

Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke testifies in his own defense Tuesday, Oct. 2, 2018, at his murder trial in the shooting death of Laquan McDonald | Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune pool photo

10:11 a.m. Both sides wrap up evidence; closings on Thursday

After the prosecution called one rebuttal witness to the stand, it rested its case in rebuttal, and the defense called no more witnesses, ending the presentation of evidence in the case.

Jurors will hear closing arguments on Thursday.

Lawyers from both sides will next discuss in closed session the critical instructions that will be read to the jury before they begin to deliberate.

Earlier this morning,  prosecutors called a Cook County sheriff’s officer back to the witness stand as their sole rebuttal witness.

Cook County Officer Adam Murphy testified earlier in the trial that he followed Chicago police to the scene of Laquan McDonald’s shooting near 41st and Pulaski on Oct. 20, 2014. On Wednesday, a prosecutor asked him to testify about the pool of blood on the ground by McDonald’s body.

“I saw a large amount of blood,” Murphy testified Wednesday.

Assistant Special Prosecutor Joseph McMahon asked him about the size of the pool of blood. Murphy said it was like 1 foot by 1 foot.

In its questioning, the defense tried to dispute the characterization of a large amount of blood. The defense has suggested that there wasn’t much blood from McDonald because he died quickly at the scene.

9:58 a.m.  The defense case comes to an end

After calling more than 15 witnesses to the stand, including Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke, the defense officially rested Wednesday morning.
The prosecution is expected to call several witnesses in rebuttal Wednesday.

7:40 a.m. The trial is wrapping up this week

After a dramatic day on Tuesday, with Jason Van Dyke taking the stand, his defense is expected to rest first thing Wednesday morning.

In case you missed his testimony, here are five key exchanges. If you want more detail on his testimony and video excerpts, you can find it in our live blog from Tuesday.

Even more than Van Dyke’s testimony, Sun-Times columnist Mark Brown found statements the officer made just before the shooting — disclosed for the first time at trial Tuesday —  even more haunting for Chicago.

Sun-Times reporters Andy Grimm and Jon Seidel offer their analysis of the day’s testimony here:

Prosecutors will have a chance to offer their case in rebuttal on Wednesday, and closing arguments could come later this week.