CHICAGO (WLS) -- More than three months after police commander Paul Bauer was gunned down during a chase in the Loop, Bauer's accused shooter says he has been disrespected by those who consider him already guilty-including Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
In a hand-written letter to the ABC7 I-Team, Shomari Legghette contends that his Constitutionally-protected status of innocent until proven guilty has been compromised by the mayor's public comments about him.
Legghette, 44, states in the two-page letter that Mayor Emanuel "used a political and public platform to get personally involved in a case where the innocence of a person not convicted is supposed to be constitutionally intact."
In early April Mayor Emanuel said at a news conference that Legghette was a "thug with a record longer than War and Peace."
Legghette is indeed a four-time felon, who wrote the letter from his cell inside the Combs Detention Center in Kankakee where he is being held on the Chicago charges.
In the letter to the I-Team the so-called career criminal writes that the mayor "does not get involved in the blatant and unlawful shootings of unarmed Black victims of police shootings with the same intensity and personal outrage."
He claims that such attitude by the mayor "reflects his stereotypical opinion that all Blackmen (sic) convicted presumably of crimes are thugs."
And he states that "this obvious bias and lack of compassion for those unarmed Black victims of police shootings in Chicago under Rahm Emanuels (sic) tenure is present in that statement that referred to me as a thug. Which was in fact, disrespectful, racist and virtually a softer way to say n-----."
Asked for a response to the letter from Legghette, a spokesman for Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel late Thursday said: "Paul Bauer was a Chicago hero and this isn't worth the paper it's written on." Mayoral spokesman Adam Collins added "I will not dignify this garbage with a response."
Legghete has been indicted on 56-counts of murder, gun and other felony charges. He is accused of fatally shooting Bauer, 53, a veteran Chicago police commander, outside the Thompson state center on February 13 after a chase through the North Loop.
His criminal record is long and plentiful; featuring convictions for robbery, battery, gun violations and drug offenses.
Legghette now has a new attorney. Scott Kamin, a veteran civil rights attorney who says he focuses on police brutality and misconduct, is now representing the accused cop killer.
The letter from Legghette to the I-Team appears to be a response to our request for a television interview with the accused. He claims in the letter that such an interview would have to be approved by his new attorney, who tells the I-Team that they will discuss our request.
Dear I-Team: A letter from an accused cop killer
An ABC7 I-Team Exclusive