Chicago activists call for release of Cedrick Chatman police-shooting video

CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) - Three years ago, a young man running from Chicago police crossed over 75th Street near Jeffrey on the city’s southeast side and was gunned down by an officer identified in a lawsuit as Kevin Fry.

The shooting was captured by three video cameras near the intersection; one was on a school, one was outside a convenience store and the third was a police blue light camera.

Police claimed at the time that 17-year-old Cedrick Chatman had a gun in his hand and had turned towards them. But a lawyer for the family says the video disputes the officers' claims, and the gun turned out to be a cell phone box.

The shooting video is tied up in court, but activists are demanding its immediate release.

“When Rahm Emanuel gave his crocodile tears speech and at the same moment, Steven Patton, Corporation Counsel was in court trying to suppress the Cedrick Chatman video, we must understand that in order to have crocodile tears, you have crocodile teeth as well,” said Greg Livingston, President of the Coalition for a New Chicago.

Activists say if the mayor wanted, he could drop the protective order and release the video now.

“We are asking the mayor, publicly, as a community, in solidarity, to practice the transparency he promised us we would see in Chicago,” said community activist William Calloway.

A judge handling the Chatman family's wrongful death lawsuit has suggested he may order the release of the videos at Thursday's court hearing.

In addition to the video, activists also want to see Scott Ando, the former head of the Independent Police Review Authority, charged for changing the investigation report to clear the officers after the lead investigator, Lorenzo Davis, initially ruled the shooting unjustified.

Organizers are planning what they are calling Black Wall Street protests on Friday, which is the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King. They say they will be targeting the Chicago Board of Trade and other exchanges, and then marching the annual Interfaith Breakfast which will be held Friday morning. They are calling on faith leaders to boycott the breakfast if the videos are not released.

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