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Friday, December 4, 2015

Chicago Mayor Sacks His Police Chief In Desperation To Duck Criticism

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel fired Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy Tuesday in what many say is a cynical, desperate attempt to dodge blame for the Chicago Police Department’s long history of corruption, misconduct and public unaccountability—not to mention the city’s skyrocketing violent crime rates—all of which represent the mayor’s, and not just the police chief’s, failures.

What apparently triggered McCarthy’s termination was the public release of video showing the October 2014 shooting of Laquan McDonald by police officer Jason Van Dyke, who was subsequently charged with first-degree murder, and the public outrage that followed.

Although McCarthy’s termination may placate some critics, others say the larger problem is Emanuel himself. As the Chicago Tribune pointed out, as mayor, Emanuel tried to block public release of the McDonald shooting video, and even sought to quash language in the court record that alluded to a “code of silence” surrounding police misconduct.