Video: Protesters Shut Down Police Board Meeting Over Fatal Shooting Of Rekia Boyd
By aaroncynic in News on Aug 21, 2015 2:22PM
Hundreds packed and ultimately shut down a Chicago Police Board meeting last night to demand that officer Dante Servin, who shot and killed 22 year-old Rekia Boyd on Chicago’s West side in 2012, be fired. Charges against Servin, who fired several shots from an unregistered weapon from his car window into a crowd that struck and killed Boyd were thrown out of court in April.
“For three years my family has been disrespected,” said a tearful Martine Sutton, Boyd’s brother, to the board. “I’ve been patient, harassed, and I’ve still stood tall. All I’m asking is that this officer gets fired, what’s so hard about that? He killed my sister in cold blood.”
Boyd was shot by Servin in March of 2012 after he, while off duty, confronted a group of people in Douglas Park. Servin alleged that one of Boyd’s companions pointed a gun at him, which was later determined to be a cell phone. He fired several shots into the group, striking the man with the cellphone in the hand and Boyd in the head. She died the next day.
After two years, Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez charged Servin with involuntary manslaughter. Another year went by before the case went to trial. “There’s no reason it should’ve taken three years for a decision to have come out,” said Black Lives Matter activist Aislinn Sol to the board. “You have a responsibility to the people of Chicago to honor what we’ve been saying for over three years. This is a part of a national conversation and movement to demand that not only our elected officials, but the bodies that are supposedly sworn to serve and protect us not kill us.”
Sutton and Sol were among only a handful of people who managed to speak in front of the board before an impromptu demonstration broke out when the board head tried to cut off Sutton due to time constraints. The crowd of about 200 began chanting “say her name” as several people delivered thousands of petitions to the table where Garry McCarthy was seated. “Will you fire Dante Servin,” the group later chanted.
“We’re committed to confronting this board, City Council and the mayor until you fire Dante Servin,” shouted one demonstrator.
Servin has been on desk duty since the shooting. The Independent Police Review Authority is investigating, and its chief administrator pledged to have it completed by the next board meeting in September.