Video footage released Friday by the Independent Police Review Authority doesn’t show the gunshot that killed 18-year-old Paul O’Neal eight days ago, but it does give a cop’s-eye view of the chaotic moments that led up to his death — and the dying teen being handcuffed in a growing pool of blood.
IPRA head Sharon Fairley described it as “shocking and disturbing” in a Friday morning press release, and the lawyer representing O’Neal’s family against the city called the images “beyond horrific.”
On the video, gunshots can be heard from behind the closed gate. After one officer helps another to scale the gate, the pair circle around to a neighboring house in the 7400 block of South Merrill Avenue and sprint to the backyard, where three officers already have a bleeding O’Neal pinned to the ground. The officer who shot O’Neal did not activate his camera before joining the chase, and IPRA has said there is no other camera angle that shows the fatal shot.
“You f—-ing shoot at us?” one officer asks the prone O’Neal as he is handcuffed. Another, searching the teen’s backpack, asks: “Have you got anything on you?”
O’Neal does not appear to respond before the camera turns away. He would die of his wounds during surgery.
Emphasis mine. It’s obvious cops can’t be trusted with body cams as they are.
Police have said O’Neal was unarmed.
Later, in footage recorded from a camera worn by a sergeant who responded to the scene, the senior officer instructs officers to shut off their body cameras, and warns one officer — apparently one who fired shots during the melee — not to talk about what happened in front of officers who are wearing their cameras.
“Here’s the thing,” the sergeant says. “Any statements you’re making in front of peoples camera and stuff like that are just killing you.”
In all, IPRA released video from nine cameras, but is reviewing footage from multiple other cameras. In her statement, Fairley said the investigation is “still very much in the early stages,” but investigators had determined that releasing the videos would not compromise their investigation.
Emphasis mine. Can we just get rid of the evil stormtroopers now? “Killing them”. No, sarge, it’s you killing all those brown people. In spite of this incredibly damning statement, FoP has rushed right in to tell people not to ‘rush to judgment’. I think I’m fine on the judgment front, it’s quite clear to me who needs to be condemned, in the harshest terms.
Dean Angelo, president of Chicago Lodge 7 of the Fraternal Order of Police, issued a statement cautioning against a rush to judgment.
“While there are multiple aspects to consider pertaining to the released videos, it is important to be mindful of how rapidly this event unfolded. Due to the fact that this chaotic incident occurred in a matter of moments, each individual perspective needs to be taken into consideration,” Angelo said.
Except for the perspective of Paul O’Neal, who can’t provide his, being murdered by cops.
After watching video with O’Neal’s mother and sister Friday morning just hours before the video was released, the family’s attorney, Michael Oppenheimer, said the recording of officers as their adrenaline subsides was equally disturbing: one officer remarks that the shooting likely means he will face a 30-day suspension.
Fuck the cop’s perspective. I don’t care about their perspective on anything.
Full story at the Chicago Sun Times.