CHICAGO — Answering calls from activists and the family of Paul O'Neal, a police watchdog agency will release video Friday related to his shooting death last week at the hands of Chicago Police.
The Independent Police Review Authority announced Wednesday that it will release video related to last week's shooting on its web portal at 11 a.m. Friday — well ahead of 60 days IPRA had previously set as its standard.
Mia Sissac, a spokeswoman for IPRA said: "The agency has extended an invitation to the O’Neal family (via their attorney) to view the videos that will be released prior to the materials going public.”
O'Neal, 18, was shot in the back and killed last Thursday evening near the intersection of 74th Street and Merrill Avenue following an alleged car theft.
O'Neal's uncle, Charles O'Neal, issued a statement Wednesday on behalf of the family saying: "We ask the Chicago Police Department to put aside the false reports and speculation by releasing all available video of the incident and full written descriptions of the events surrounding my nephew’s death, including the names of all [Police Department] personnel at the scene and witness statements."
Otherwise, the statement read: "Now is not the time to examine the alleged actions of a young man who cannot defend himself. After all, he was found guilty and sentenced already. He has no higher price to pay for his mistakes, real or imagined."
One piece of video that will not be released is the bodycam from the as-yet-unidentified officer who shot O'Neal in the back, killing him. The Police Department said earlier this week that the officer had been equipped with a bodycam, but it did not record the shooting.
Police Department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said bodycams had been issued to the officer's district within 10 days of the shooting, but the officer's bodycam "didn't capture [the] fatal encounter."
Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson has already moved to relieve three unnamed officers of their police duties for violating department policy in the incident. That includes the officer who shot and killed O'Neal and two others who opened fire.
According to police reports, O'Neal and another teen — arrested, but not identified — were spotted about 7:30 p.m. Thursday in South Shore in a Jaguar that had been reported stolen in suburban Bolingbrook.
Officers attempted to stop the car near 74th Street and Merrill Avenue, but it sideswiped a squad car and another car. Officers opened fire. O'Neal died after being shot in the back.
Activist Lamon Reccord said he was a friend of O'Neal in a Facebook post stating: "He should've been detained/arrested, not experiencing death!" He also tweeted: "I miss my brother but the police took him."
Also on Monday, activist William Calloway, who played a role in the release of the Laquan McDonald video, called for the Independent Police Review Authority to release all video of the incident before the established 60-day period.
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