The Cop Who Fatally Shot Laquan McDonald Now Works For The Police Union
By Rachel Cromidas in News on Mar 31, 2016 3:09PM
The cop facing murder charges for fatally shooting black teenager Laquan McDonald was suspended without pay from his job with the Chicago Police Department last year. Now the cop, Jason Van Dyke, is working as a janitor for the Fraternal Order of Police—the police union that spread false information to defend his decision to shoot McDonald a startling 16 times—according to Fox32.
Union President Dean Angelo Sr. told Fox32 that Van Dyke was doing janitorial work at night out of the FOP headquarters because the publicity around the shooting—which came to national attention after a dashcam video was released last fall—had made him unemployable.
“We do this for our membership, and this is what the FOP stands for, fraternalism," Angelo Sr. told reporters. "This officer is in a very difficult situation, financially, he has a family and we would do it for anybody that works as a Chicago Police officer.” The FOP employed another CPD officer as a receptionist for a year after she mistook a cell phone for a gun and fatally shot Latanya Haggarty in 1999. And, as FOP reps noted, Van Dyke is considered innocent until proven guilty in the eyes of the law.
A current and retired police officer both told Fox32 that the hiring sends the wrong message to the public about the severity of police shootings and the credibility of the FOP.
South Side Rev. Michael Pfleger decried the news about Van Dyke's hiring in a Facebook post Wednesday night. "The police Union says to Chicago...we don't give a damn what he did, what you think, he is one of ours, and we are going to take care of him," he wrote. "We get a new Supt. who is trying to restore Police and Community Relations and the Union just SET THEM BACK ALL OVER AGAIN....This is a disgrace....Fire the whole union......EVERY UNION MEMBER SHOULD DEMAND HE BE FIRED!!!!!!"
There are protests planned at the FOP's West Loop headquarters Thursday at noon and 6:30 p.m., according to ABC7.