CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke spent several years as a member of the department's targeted response team, working in the city's most dangerous neighborhoods.
But looking into his background, FOX 32 discovered that there have been numerous complaints regarding his conduct.
“It's sad to say, but it really wasn't a shock,” said Michael McCready.
Seven years ago, McCready represented Eddie Nance in an excessive force lawsuit against two Chicago police officers. One of them was Jason Van Dyke, the officer who shot and killed LaQuan McDonald last year. Nance claimed that during a traffic stop for having no front license plate, the officers handcuffed him and slammed his face onto the hood of their squad car, seriously injuring him.
“They tore both of his rotator cuffs,” McCready said.
Two years later, a jury awarded Nance $350,000 in damages. During the two years of litigation, McCready says he noticed that Officer Van Dyke seemed particularly arrogant.
“The cockiness, about him, and his demeanor, was even more than I’ve seen is typical in police officers,” McCready said.
Despite the jury verdict, an investigation by the Independent Police Review Authority found Nance's allegations could not be sustained. Department records show that 2001, Officer Van Dyke has faced 18 complaints of misconduct with none of them being sustained.
In his deposition during the Nance Case, Officer Van Dyke said the way that Nance pulled his car over had made him feel uncomfortable and caused him to fear for his safety.
Van Dyke was asked, "When you have a belief that someone, a suspect, has a weapon on them, do you do a pat down?" Van Dyke's answer? Yes.
FOX 32 wasn’t able to reach Nance for his thoughts, but his attorney says Nance was very emotional when learning of the latest case involving Van Dyke.
“He said, ‘why didn’t they do something about this officer in my case, and if they did, this young boy wouldn't have been killed,’” McCready said.
McCready says Nance has pretty much recovered from his physical injuries, but the emotional scars from his run-in with officer van dyke still remain.