Police Detective Who Killed Rekia Boyd Resigns
By aaroncynic in News on May 17, 2016 7:46PM
Chicago Police Detective Dante Servin, who shot and killed Rekia Boyd in 2012, has resigned. Police Board President Lori Lightfoot confirmed his resignation early Tuesday afternoon, just two days before a special hearing scheduled by the board, according to the Tribune.
Servin killed the unarmed and innocent Boyd in Douglas Park while off-duty, when he fired an unregistered weapon over his shoulder into a crowd during an altercation. He was charged with involuntary manslaughter, but those charges were thrown out in April of 2015. The detective maintained that someone in Boyd’s group had pointed a gun in his direction, but the object turned out to be a cell phone. In his ruling, Judge Dennis Porter said since the cop’s actions were “beyond reckless,” prosecutors couldn’t prove recklessness. “It is intentional and the crime, if any there be, is first-degree murder,” said Porter at the time.
Though former Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy and the Independent Police Review Authority both recommended Servin be fired, he was still allowed to keep his job. Hundreds of activists have attended and demonstrated at countless board hearings demanding his resignation and that he be stripped of his pension. By resigning however, Servin is still eligible for his pension and will be able to avoid testifying publicly about the shooting. The board wrote in a statement:
"It is the Board's understanding that given the resignation, counsel for the Superintendent will follow normal procedure and file a motion with the Board seeking to withdraw all charges against Servin without prejudice. The Board will then take that motion under advisement and take action at its regular monthly public meeting on Thursday, May 19th. In light of the resignation, the previously scheduled evidentiary hearing will not proceed."
Since Servin resigned, Thursday’s hearing, which many activist groups planned to attend, has been cancelled. However, a “national day of action” is still being planned for May 19.
Updated 4:15 p.m.:BYP100, one of the groups that's organized several demonstrations calling for Servin's removal and planning Thursday's national day of action, called his a "relief." But, they said, it's also "indicative of an unsurprising tactic by Servin to escape accountability" and they will continue to demand the City Council prohibit him from receiving a pension.
"The upsetting and understated reality is that Black cis and trans women, girls, and femmes are still being victimized by state violence in Chicago and nationwide. The fact still remains that sexual assault is the second most reported form of police misconduct—which is disproportionately experienced by women, girls, and femmes—while excessive force is the first. Furthermore, resignation allows Servin to take up employment as a police officer in any other city or town, which still puts Black people in danger and subjects us to police violence and control. Likewise, resignation creates space for police like Servin to leave with dignity—something Servin does not deserve since he snatched Rekia’s ability to live in her full dignity."