Activists continue fight for federal civil rights charges against Jason Van Dyke ahead of release

The former Chicago police officer is scheduled to walk out of prison in a matter of days
CHICAGO (WLS) -- A lineup of Chicago's most vocal activists are furious that convicted former Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke is about to walk out of prison in a matter of days.

"We all know what happened, "said activists Will Calloway. "[He was] unjustly sentenced to 81 months in prison."

Van Dyke is set to walk free on February 3 after serving just half of his sentence for fatally shooting Laquan McDonald 16 times in October 2014.

"This man took everything from me," said McDonald's grandmother, Tracy Hunter. "This man is going to walk. If tables turned, my grandson would have never seen the light of day. He shot my grandson 16 times and then reload the gun again."

Some of the activists that gathered Monday afternoon led the 400-day fight for the city to release the video of Van Dyke killing McDonald.

VIDEO: Dash-cam video of police shooting of Laquan McDonald

Now they're taking the fight to the federal government.

RELATED: Derek Chauvin verdict for George Floyd death draws comparisons to Jason Van Dyke, Laquan McDonald

"Calling on our fed government to intervene," Calloway said.

They are demanding the Justice Department bring charges against the former police officer for violating McDonald's civil rights, much like the federal charges against three Minneapolis police officers involved in killing George Floyd.

"This sends a clear message to all police across the country," Calloway said. "This man has a platform."

RELATED: Jason Van Dyke trial, Laquan McDonald shooting timeline
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The shooting death of Laquan McDonald by Officer Jason Van Dyke is a story with ripple effects beyond the court case that follows.

"Calling on U.S. attorney and attorney general, we want justice for Laquan McDonald!! We want it and we want it now," said Rep. Bobby Rush.

"Not only do I need your help, we need your help to keep this man locked up," Hunter added. "He don't deserve to get out, period."

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