Chicago Deals With Another Controversial Police Shooting

City changes policy on officers involved in shootings
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2015 1:13 PM CST
Chicago Deals With Another Controversial Police Shooting
Latonya Jones, 19, holds a photo of her mother, Bettie Jones, during a vigil on Sunday, in Chicago.   (Ashlee Rezin/Chicago Sun-Times via AP)

Chicago's police department is dealing with the fallout of another police shooting, this one leaving an innocent bystander dead along with a 19-year-old college student. It took place about 4am Saturday when police answered a disturbance call from a man who said his teenage son, home from college, was trying to break into his bedroom with a baseball bat. Some details:

  • The start: Antonio LeGrier called 911 to report that his son, Quintonio, was threatening him. The elder LeGrier also called his downstairs neighbor, a 55-year-old mother of five identified as Bettie Jones, to warn her that his son was a "little irate" and not to open her door "unless police arrive," reports the Chicago Sun-Times.

  • The shooting: Police say they arrived and opened fire after being confronted by a "combative" Quintonio LeGrier. He was hit multiple times, and Jones was fatally struck by one bullet in the chest, reports AP. Details remain scant, but the elder LeGrier says he heard Jones yell, "Whoa, whoa, whoa!," heard gunshots, and came downstairs to see both bodies in the foyer. He said one officer then said, “F—, no, no, no. I thought he was lunging at me with the [baseball] bat," reports the Sun-Times.
  • Police acknowledgment: "The 55-year-old female victim was accidentally struck and tragically killed," says a police statement. The swift acknowledgment is "notable" and a sign of the shift underway after the release of the Laquan McDonald video, says the Chicago Tribune.
  • New policy: Mayor Rahm Emanuel promised an investigation and announced that any officers who fire their weapons will now be placed on administrative duty for at least 30 days to allow for a thorough inquiry, reports NBC Chicago.
  • 'Mental health issues': Quintonio LeGrier was an engineering student but had been struggling with "mental health issues," reports CBS News. “Why couldn’t he be in the hospital if something had to happen, rather than in the morgue?” asked his mother, Janet Cooksey.
(More Chicago stories.)

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