Restaurant video missing footage of Chicago police shooting

Fri Dec 4, 2015 4:58pm EST
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By Mary Wisniewski

CHICAGO Dec 4 (Reuters) - Chicago officials on Friday released video from a nearby Burger King restaurant taken on the night a police officer fatally shot a black teen but it was missing the time period when the 2014 shooting occurred.

The missing footage has led to allegations of tampering with evidence and of a police cover-up in the case, which have been strongly denied by police and prosecutors.

Last week, the city released police car dashboard camera video that showed Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times on Oct. 20, 2014. On the same day the video was released, Van Dyke was charged with first-degree murder.

Protests erupted afterwards in the country's third largest city, culminating in the firing of Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy by Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Tuesday.

Critics of the mayor and of the local prosecutor have complained that it took too long for charges to be filed.

High-profile killings of black men at the hands of mainly white police officers in U.S. cities have fueled protests over the past two years and prompted a national debate about the use of excessive force by police.

Officials had gathered video evidence on the night of the shooting from nearby businesses on the city's southwest side, including a Burger King restaurant.

The footage, released in response to a public records request, showed a gap of 86 minutes, including the time when McDonald was shot. The tape has no sound and shows policemen in the Burger King after the shooting, with one working at a computer monitor.   Continued...