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Fatal Shooting of 13-Year-Old Chicago Boy Sparks Outrage

  • Amanda Casanova

    Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and…

  • 2021 Apr 16

Newly released police bodycam footage shows a 13-year-old appearing to drop a handgun and begin to raise his hands just as a Chicago police officer fatally shoots him.

Footage from Officer Eric Stillman’s body camera captures the moments just before the shooting of Adam Toledo, who was Latino, the Associated Press reports.

The shooting happened on March 29 at about 3 a.m. after police responded to reports of shots fired in the area.

Toledo ran from police down an alley.

“Police! Stop! Stop right (expletive) now!” The officer says in the video.

Toledo slows down and stops near an opening in a fence.

“Hands! Hands! Show me your (expletive) hands!” Stillman says.

Toledo turns toward Stillman and seemingly begins to raise his hands, and the officer yells, “Drop it!” Stillman then fires one shot into Toledo’s chest.

Stillman approaches Toledo and tells him to “stay awake.” He begins administering CPR.

The video also shows a flashlight shining on a handgun on the ground near Toledo.

Stillman’s attorney, Tim Grace, said Stillman was right to fire his weapon.

“The juvenile offender had the gun in his right hand ... looked at the officer which could be interpreted as attempting to acquire a target and began to turn to face the officer attempting to swing the gun in his direction,” Grace wrote. “At this point, the officer was faced with a life-threatening and deadly force situation. All prior attempts to deescalate and gain compliance with all of the officer’s lawful orders had failed.”

An attorney for Toledo’s family, however, said Toledo tossed the gun.

“He complied,” she said. “He turned around.”

The release of the body cam footage comes with the ongoing trial of former Officer Derek Chauvin, who is charged with the murder of George Floyd.

Last year, Chauvin arrested Floyd and pressed his knee into the man’s neck, killing him. 

Chauvin’s trial continues Monday with closing arguments.

The nation is also reacting to the recent killing of Daunte Wright, also a Black man who was fatally shot by a police officer during a traffic stop.

Authorities have said Wright was accidentally shot when the officer meant to Tase him.

On Thursday night, small groups of protestors gathered and marched in response to the body cam footage.

“We live in a city that is traumatized by a long history of police violence and misconduct,” said Mayor Lori Lightfoot. “So, while we don’t have enough information to be the judge and jury of this particular situation, it is certainly understandable why so many of our residents are feeling that all too familiar surge of outrage and pain. It is even clearer that trust between our community and law enforcement is far from healed and remains badly broken.”


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Photo courtesy: Pixabay

Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and She blogs at The Migraine Runner.