To: Governor J.B. Pritzker

Demand Justice for Laquan McDonald!

On October 20, 2014, Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke brutally gunned down 17-year-old Laquan McDonald, shooting him 16 times. Because for more than a year Chicago city officials showed no intention of holding Officer Van Dyke accountable, we demand:

* the resignation of Superintendent Garry McCarthy for his inability to end the culture of violence towards Black people within the Chicago Police Department
* the resignation of State's Attorney Anita Alvarez for her continued protection of violent and corrupt police officers
* that Governor Rauner appoint a special prosecutor to investigate this case and all future cases of police killings
* that the United Nations launch an immediate investigation of the Chicago Police Department and the Cook County State's Attorney's office for violating the human rights of Black people in the city of Chicago and Cook County.

Why is this important?

On October 20, 2014, 17-year-old Laquan McDonald was brutally gunned down by 16 shots from Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke. The murder was caught on police dashboard cameras and security video from the restaurant- which was erased by police. [1] With the release of this devastating video evidence, it is now clear that the police lied and Laquan did not act in an aggressive manner.

More than a year later, even with full evidence, Chicago city officials did nothing but reassign Officer Van Dyke to desk duty. But now that sustained grassroots mobilizations forced the city to release the video, they are finally charging Van Dyke- not because they believe in justice, but only because they want to avoid mass outrage.

In Chicago, Black women, Black men, and Black youth face extreme levels of anti-Black violence and terrorism at the hands of the police. The city of Chicago has no interest in justice and the US Justice Department has consistently failed to defend Black people from racist attacks by police. That is why we are calling for the resignation of the police superintendent and the state's attorney and calling on the governor to appoint a special prosecutor whose only job is to investigate police killings.

In addition, we call for a truly independent investigation conducted by the United Nations and Organization of American States into the violation of the human rights of Black people in Cook county and the city of Chicago.

[1] “The video that will rip Chicago apart — and why you need to see it,” The Chicago Tribune, 11-10-2015,
“Chicago Police Sued for Alleged Police Brutality” ABC 7, 07-09-2015,