Chicagoans plan rally for 13-year-old boy killed by policeman

We do not respond with violence or the destruction of property," said the 12th Ward Independent Political Organization, one of the organizers of the rally, in a statement. In the latest police-involved shootings of people of color, a police officer in a suburb of Minneapolis shot and killed a Black man during a traffic stop, and now faces a second-degree manslaughter charge.

Reuters | Updated: 17-04-2021 04:57 IST | Created: 17-04-2021 04:57 IST
Chicagoans plan rally for 13-year-old boy killed by policeman

Hundreds of Chicagoans are expected to rally on Friday evening to show solidarity with the family of Adam Toledo, a day after the city released a graphic video of a police officer shooting and killing the 13-year-old boy in an alley two weeks ago.

The nine-minute video, recorded by Eric Stillman's body camera, shows showed the 34-year-old officer chasing and shooting Toledo on March 29 at 2:30 a.m. in Little Village, a working-class neighborhood on the city's West Side with a large population of Mexican Americans. Toledo appeared to be holding a handgun when he compiled with Stillman's order for him to stop. Toledo then dropped the weapon and raised hands immediately before Stillman opened fire, the video showed.

The rally, to be held Logan Square Park, about five miles (8 km) north of where the shooting occurred, drew interest from more than 2,000 people on Facebook as of Friday afternoon. "The Toledo family implores everyone who gathers in Adam’s name to remain peaceful, respectful and nonviolent and to continue to work constructively and tirelessly for reform," the Toledo family said in a statement on Friday.

The release of the video comes as tensions are running high in Chicago and across the country over the issues of policing and racial justice. "We need to end the cycle of violence that exists in our communities. We do not respond with violence or the destruction of property," said the 12th Ward Independent Political Organization, one of the organizers of the rally, in a statement.

In the latest police-involved shootings of people of color, a police officer in a suburb of Minneapolis shot and killed a Black man during a traffic stop, and now faces a second-degree manslaughter charge. On Thursday, the defense rested its case in the trial of Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis officer charged with murder in the death of George Floyd, whose death last year ignited a nationwide wave of protests. The Chicago Police Department said in a statement that it was closely monitoring events across the country and deployed additional resources throughout the city including downtown. The department said it has also canceled days off for police officers in several units and teams.

Businesses throughout the city boarded up windows over the past week in anticipation of possible riots and looting after release of the video. The city saw widespread looting and rioting in the days and weeks following Floyd's death last May. Stillman, a five-year veteran of the force, is on administrative desk duty, pending an investigation into the incident. He attorney was unavailable for comment on Friday.

John Catanzara, president of the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police union, told CNN on Thursday night Stillman had only eight-tenths of a second to make the decision whether to shoot and his actions were justified. "That officer's actions were actually heroic,” he said.

Protesters on Thursday blocked traffic and held largely peaceful demonstrations in downtown Chicago. They were met by helmeted officers on foot, social media images showed.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)


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