Crime scene photos released in legal fight over 2015 police shooting

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The families of two victims of a fatal police shooting allege that city attorneys coached paramedics about what to tell investigators. (WLS)

Crime scene photos were released Tuesday in court as part of an ongoing legal fight over the 2015 police shooting that killed Quintonio LeGrier, 19, and Bettie Jones, 55, on Chicago's West Side.

Lawyers for the victims' families argue that city attorneys may have influenced witnesses. They allege that paramedics were coached to change their stories to make them more consistent with the theory that LeGrier was the aggressor. In the photos show in court, a bat is seen inside the building.

The pre-trial proceedings are part of a wrongful death case against the city of Chicago by the families. In December 2015, LeGrier and Jones were fatally shot after LeGrier's father called police for a domestic disturbance. Jones was a neighbor.

Chicago police Officer Robert Rialmo was not charged criminally in their deaths, but the city's Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) agency determined Officer Rialmo's actions to be unjustified.

Attorneys for the LeGrier and Jones estates said city attorneys should be sanctioned for inappropriate behavior in the pre-trial proceedings -- including allegations that City attorneys coached paramedics to change their testimony.

Judge O'Hara ordered the critical parts of one paramedic's testimony be played and read in court.

Shortly after the shooting, paramedic Joseph DiGiovanni told investigators with city's Independent Police Review Authority (IPRA) -- the agency that preceded COPA - that Jones was near marker "D" and LeGrier was near marker "C" at the crime scene.

However, in a recent deposition, DiGiovanni told attorneys LeGrier was near marker "E" with his legs on the porch.

"It was only just a few weeks ago, after they met with the city lawyers, that all of a sudden the bottom half of Quintonio's legs are now outside the building," said Jack Kennedy, attorney for the LeGrier estate.

In a statement, Bill McCaffrey, spokesman for the city's Law Department said: "The Department of Law is filing a written response that will address the claims made in the motion for sanctions, however, any suggestion that our attorneys improperly asked a witness to alter or change testimony is unequivocally false."


On Thursday, Chicago police Supt. Eddie Johnson will be deposed. Mayor Rahm Emanuel will be deposed on March 29. A Cook County judge is expected Thursday to determine a location for his deposition and whether the video of the mayor being questioned under oath will be sealed.

If it's sealed, the public could only view it if it's played in court.

City attorneys attempted to limit the time of the mayor's deposition, but Judge James O'Hara ruled a time limit would not be imposed.
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chicago police departmentchicago shootingpolice shootingpolice-involved shootingChicagoLoopWest Garfield Park
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