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Attorneys For Laquan McDonald Accuse Police Of Witness Intimidation

Lawyers say police coerced witnesses to change their stories.

Adrien Vargas // REVOLT

Attorneys for Laquan McDonald, the Chicago teen struck down by a police officer in a hail of bullets and covered up for 13 months, claim officers intimidated witnesses and coerced testimony to be changed.

In a report released this morning (January 8), Jeffrey Neslun and Michael Robbins say after pouring over more than 3,000 pages of documents via a Freedom of Information Act request, they found three instances where Chicago police questioned witnesses and ignored or changed accounts.

The attorneys interviewed a truck driver who saw the shooting and he recalled police questioning him into the wee hours of the morning despite his protesting that he had a 6:00 a.m. shift.

Another witness, a woman, reportedly yelled to the officer to stop shooting (that officer, Jason Van Dyke, shot McDonald 16 times after he says the teen charged him; video evidence released a year after the shooting showed that the young man, though armed, was instead running away.) The woman informed the lawyers that the police suggested they "were going to get me" if she did not change her statement.

Another witness claimed police yelled at them on the scene to leave rather than get a detailed account.

CNN reports that Chicago Police had no comment as of press time.

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