Grand jury requested to look into other Chicago cops at Laquan McDonald slaying

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A grand jury may hear evidence against other police at the scene of the fatal shooting of Laquan McDonald by Jason Van Dyke. (WLS)

A special prosecutor appointed to the Laquan McDonald case wants to take a closer look at the other officers at the scene. Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson has already announced plans to fire some of the officers from the scene, but the special prosecutor wants to investigate possible criminal charges.

Former Cook County Judge Patricia Brown Holmes was named in July as the special prosecutor to look into whether other Chicago Police officers covered up the circumstances that led to the fatal shooting of 17-year-old McDonald.

At the time she was appointed, Brown Holmes said she would "take a look at the facts and go from there. I don't have any preconceived notion about how it should go or what I'm going to do. ... Many of us think we know what the evidence is because we heard this or we heard that. I would just say everyone should be patient and allow the process to play itself out ... I'm going into it with a clean slate."

Dashboard camera video now infamously shows frame by frame what happened leading up to the shooting death of McDonald by Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke. Van Dyke fired 16 times at the back of the teenager, who was walking away from responding officers.

Journalism Jamie Kalven believes police knew what happened within hours of the shooting, but it's not the story they released to the public.

"I think the moment Laquan McDonald hit the ground the officers standing there knew oh my god, I am now caught up in this. This is going to change my life," Kalven said.

Brown Holmes apparently has enough evidence to present a case against the officers to a grand jury. Kalven has been investigating the shooting since shorlty after it happened, and said he believes the officers who witnessed the shooting tried to alter the story to justify it, making it seem like McDonald threatened Van Dyke.

"It assigns all responsibility to Laquan McDonald. Laquan McDonald lunged at a police officer and caused his death," Kalven said.

Van Dyke now faces first-degree murder charges, and the city's Inspector General's office recommended firing as many as nine officers allegedly involved in a cover-up. Several of those officers opted instead to retire in what Kalven said is a familiar pattern.

"Then this code of silence phenomena is really at the center of that," he said.

Kane County State's Attorney Joseph McMahon in August was appointed special prosecutor in the case against Van Dyke.

In the wake of the McDonald shooting, the U.S. Justice Department launched an investigation of the Chicago Police Department, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy was fired and a panel was appointed to look into how the CPD holds cops accountable.

That panel recommended a slew of changes, many of which Mayor Rahm Emanuel has implemented or begun to. For instance, he has recommended replacing the Independent Police Review Authority with the Civilian Office of Police Accountability.

Brown Holmes, a former chief assistant corporation counsel for the city, is currently a partner with the law firm of Riley, Safer, Holmes & Cancila.

ABC7 Eyewitness News reached to the Fraternal Order of Police for comment, but has not received a response.

The grand jury could convene at any time and federal investigators are also looking at the possibility of federal charges against some of the officers involved.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.
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