Chicago police officer fatally shoots two, triggering protests | News | DW | 26.12.2015
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Chicago police officer fatally shoots two, triggering protests

A mother of five and a teenager were killed when Police responded to a domestic disturbance call on the city's West Side. Chicago's police is already under investigation after a white officer killed a black teen in 2014.

A 19-year-old college student and a 55-year-old mother of five both died in hospital after a police officer shot and killed both upon being "confronted by a combative subject" at an address they had been called to.

Quintonio Legrier and his neighbor Bettie Jones were both pronounced dead after being rushed to two separate hospitals. The medical examiner's office confirmed that both were black, adding that autopsies had not been scheduled.

Frame grab from a dash cam video released by the Chicago Police

Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke was charged with first-degree murder after shooting Laquan McDonald 16 times

The police confirmed the event in a statement but did not reveal the race of the officer, his rank or how long the officer had been with the department. It was not clear from the police statement if either of the two victims was armed at the time or if there was any video or audio recording of the incident available.

Independent Police Review Authority spokesman Larry Merritt confirmed that his agency was investigating an officer-involved shooting but had no further information.

Legrier's mother: 'my son didn't have a gun'

Quintonio Legrier's mother, Janet Cooksey, told the daily Chicago Tribune newspaper that her son had been suffering with mental issues, added that the police didn't have to react the way they did. According to her statement, her son did not pose a threat to the police. She also revealed that Legrier reportedly "didn't have a gun. He had a bat."

Demonstrators protesting the shooting of Laquan McDonald

Laquan McDonald'S death led to protests in Chicago, where roughly one third of the city's population is black

"We're thinking the police are going to service us, take him to the hospital. They took his life," she said. Janet Cooksey, who was not present at the time of the shooting, also demanded a personal apology from Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel for what happened to her only child.

Meanwhile US television network NBC corroborated reports saying that Quintonio Legrier had only been armed with a metal baseball bat.

Jones' brother demands answers

Bettie Jones' brother Melvin Jones said he had many "unanswered questions and no answers" regarding the incident.

"I'm numb right now. Right now there's a whole lot of anger, a whole lot of tears. I don't have time to feel. I have a funeral to prepare," he told the Associated Press news agency.

The Chicago Police Department is already the subject of a federal civil rights investigation after video footage was released showing white officer Jason Van Dyke shooting black 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times in 2014. The release of the McDonald shooting video had led to protests in November 2015, andhad also forced former Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy to resign.

ss/rg (AP, Reuters)

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