On Saturday, Chicago Prosecutors released more information on the Chicago Police shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo, saying he had a 9MM Ruger pistol and gunshot residue on one hand the night he was shot and killed. The shooting occurred on March 29, when officers were dispatched to the area after ShotSpotter technology detected eight gunshots.
Prosecutors say 21-year-old Ruben Roman, the second suspect who was with Toledo in Little Village during the shooting, was charged with reckless discharge of a firearm, unlawful use of a weapon by a felon and felony endangerment of a child.
In court documents released on Saturday, prosecutors said that on March 29 at about 2:30AM, Chicago Police chased both Roman and Toledo, but Roman stopped first.
Police say they ordered Toledo to stop running and to show his hands. They say he stopped but concealed his right hand on his side. Officers told him to drop the gun and he did not. One officer fired a single shot, striking Toledo in the chest.
Toledo was pronounced dead at the scene. Authorities say the 9MM Ruger pistol was found next to him, and that his hand tested positive for gunshot residue, indicating he had recently fired a gun.
Some community members are outraged over the shooting, citing the suspects age. Protests have been occurring in the city since the incident.
The Little Village Community Council is demanding that the police body camera video be released immediately, and police say they plan to release the footage. The same council announced a Freedom of Information Act request for the name of the officer who shot Toledo.
Chicago’s Mayor Lori Lightfoot has called for reforms on how police conduct foot pursuits after the shooting. “We cannot and will not push the foot pursuit reform off for another day,” Lightfoot said at a news conference. “No longer can we afford to put off to tomorrow what we can address today, because lives are truly at stake.”
The family of Adam Toledo claims he “dreamed of becoming a police officer,” and that they were concerned by officials’ “hurtful and false mischaracterization” of Adam.
.@EricZorn is right. The evidence shows that #AdamToledo was involved in gang activity. He had an illegal gun during his fatal encounter with police. Those in the comment section are angry an officer didn’t let himself get killed. https://t.co/pxngrEE9eW pic.twitter.com/9BOh6FrKPS
— Andy Ngô (@MrAndyNgo) April 8, 2021
The Fraternal Order of Police in Chicago has said video evidence would show the shooting was justified.
“The officer was absolutely shaken by the circumstances of which happened that night because a life was taken,” union president John Catanzara said. “But it was justified. The offender was fleeing from the police with a weapon. It’s irregardless that he was 13 years old.”
The question we are left with: What could have the police done differently during a foot pursuit of an armed suspect? Get shot?
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Author: Ray Dietrich
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