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Police Calls Prior to Laquan Shooting: 'Looking for Taser, Armed Offender'

By DNAinfo Staff | December 24, 2015 8:26am | Updated on December 24, 2015 8:34am
 Officers Joseph Walsh (l.) and Jason Van Dyke approach Laquan McDonald seconds before Van Dyke shot the 17-year-old.
Officers Joseph Walsh (l.) and Jason Van Dyke approach Laquan McDonald seconds before Van Dyke shot the 17-year-old.
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Chicago Police Department

CHICAGO — A Chicago Police dispatcher can be heard asking officers several times for a Taser to be brought to the scene before Laquan McDonald was shot, NBC5 reports.

The station obtained audio recordings of radio calls between police and a dispatcher through a Freedom of Information request.

Seventeen-year-old McDonald was shot 16 times by Officer Jason Van Dyke, one of several officers responding to a complaint about car break-ins in October of 2014.

RELATED: Read the Charges Against Officer Van Dyke

A police dashcam video of the the shooting shows McDonald, carrying a knife, appearing to be walk away from police when he was shot by Van Dyke. Van Dyke has been charged with murder.

Prosecutors earlier have said that a Taser had been requested by officers on the scene. NBC5 said the radio calls represent the first audio accounts of the incident.

The officer can be heard asking, "Someone with a Taser, ah, we're at 40th and Keeler. This guy's ah, guy walking away with a knife in his hand." Responds the dispatcher: "Alright, anybody have a Taser, help out 401 Keeler for 815 Robert. Looking for a Taser, armed offender."

The station did not report which officer requested the Taser or whether one was brought to the scene at 41st Street and Pulaski Road but the dispatcher can be heard requesting a stun gun more than once. An officer reports that the tires of a squad car had been popped by who is now known to be McDonald.

Later comes a call "Shots fired by police, get an ambulance over here." The dispatcher asks, "Are you guys OK?" A female officer responds, "10-4. Everything is fine. Roll an ambulance over here."

RELATED: Hear the radio calls from the Laquan McDonald shooting via NBC5.

Daily Southtown columnist Phil Kadner has reported that only about one in five Chicago police officers are Taser-certified and that only patrol cars with a certified officer can carry the stun guns.

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