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Protesters in Chicago demand: ‘Stop DOJ complicity with police crimes’

By staff |
December 12, 2015
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Chicago march against police crimes.
Chicago march against police crimes. (Photo Credit: Babur Balos)

Chicago, IL - Victims of Chicago Police Department (CPD) crimes gathered with 500 supporters on Dec. 10 to file complaints with the U.S. Attorney’s office. The official complaints represented torture victims, such as Mark Clements; Howard Morgan, a former police officer who survived being shot 28 times by Chicago cops; Emmet Farmer, on behalf of his son Flint, whose murder was captured on dash cam video; and Dorothy Holmes, mother of Ronald “Ronnieman” Johnson. The video of Ronnieman’s murder one year ago has just been released by the city, and has sparked another massive wave of protests.

Also filing were Bertha Escamilla and Anabel Perez on behalf of their sons, both tortured into false confessions as teens; and the sister of Heriberto Godinez, killed by CPD in August.

Organized by the Chicago Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, they held a press conference before their meeting with the office of U.S. Attorney, Zachary Farndon. There they presented their demands, including that the Department of Justice prosecute all criminal cops and their co-conspirators in Chicago and Cook County government and that the CPD torture center known as Homan Square be closed.

Attorney General Loretta Lynch will be coming to Chicago to carry out an investigation into the CPD in the wake of the cover-up of the murder of Laquan McDonald. The torture survivors and families of victims expect Lynch will narrow the investigation to address only a few high profile cases, but they want justice for their loved ones as well.

Frank Chapman of the Alliance said, “We want to call attention to the overriding fact that the Department of Justice (DOJ) has consistently been complicit in police crimes in Chicago and that their role in the cover-up of the murder of Laquan McDonald is just the latest example of their complicity.”

Chapman continued “The DOJ is coming to our town but they are not coming to give us justice unless we demand it and fight for it.”

Protesters then wound through downtown Chicago, ending up outside Block 37, the site of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s holiday party. Mike Elliot of the Alliance spoke to the crowd about keeping up the pressure on Emanuel, as well as State’s Attorney, Anita Alvarez, to resign. People in the crowd were happy to disrupt Emanuel’s party.

The Alliance also used the protest to highlight their legislation to create community control of the police. Chapman stated, “We also want to give a human face to our demand for an all elected, Civilian Police Accountability Council. The people must be empowered to hold the police accountable. And we, the people must have the decisive and final voice in how our communities are policed.”