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Foxx Announces Legislation To Add Second Review To Police Shootings

By aaroncynic in News on Apr 27, 2017 8:40PM

Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx is hoping to add another layer of accountability to the investigation of police shootings by adding a second review process.

“Historically, there has been a lack of trust in how these cases are handled,” said Foxx in a statement. “That’s why I am seeking legislation that would provide the public with a second opinion review of these cases when my office concludes charges are not warranted.”

Foxx was propelled to the State’s Attorney position in the wake of several controversial shootings, including Laquan McDonald and Rekia Boyd, by police officers and public outcry against the way several cases were handled by former State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez. Since Foxx took office, the State’s Attorney’s office has filed first-degree murder charges against two police officers, though her office decided not to file any charges in the cases of Quintonio LeGrier and Bettie Jones, prompting harsh criticism from some communities.

Foxx’s proposed legislation would designate the Office of the State Appellate Prosecutor as special prosecution in police shootings, which would then review investigations like the ones into the killings of Jones and LeGrier, and then make its own recommendations as to whether or not charges were appropriate. If the State Appellate Prosecutor reaches a different conclusion, the State’s Attorney would recuse herself from the prosecution of charges.

“Providing for an independent review by a special prosecutor will help reassure the public that these decisions are being weighed carefully based on the evidence and without any political considerations,” said Foxx.