CHICAGO — The officer who fatally shot Kajuan Raye, 19, the day before Thanksgiving has been relieved of his powers, police said.
That action is the most serious measure Chicago Police can take while the shooting is investigated by the Independent Police Review Authority, according to a Chicago Police news release.
Typically, officers who have shot someone are placed on 30 days of administrative leave while IPRA investigates. But this shooting has concerned Supt. Eddie Johnson, police said.
“Having been a police officer for 28 years, I know that this job is not easy and the decision to use force is extremely complex and must be made in seconds without the benefits of formal reviews and deliberations," Johnson said, according to the news release. "However, based on the little information we know at this point, I have concerns about this incident and feel this decision is in the best interest of the department and the people of Chicago as we await a methodical and impartial investigation into exactly what transpired.”
On Wednesday night, the sergeant was responding to a call of battery in West Englewood when he saw a man who matched the description of the attacker, police said. The man ran away while the sergeant followed, and the sergeant said the man pointed a gun at him twice during the chase, police said.
The sergeant shot at the man, hitting him, and the man was taken to a hospital, police said. He was later pronounced dead and identified as Raye by the Cook County Medical Examiner's Office.
But no gun has been found, police said, and the Medical Examiner's Office said Raye was shot in his back in a homicide.
The decision to relieve the officer of his powers pending the IPRA investigation was based on preliminary information from detectives, the unsuccessful search for a gun and the Medical Examiner's findings, police said.
Activists have said they think Raye was unarmed and they want the officer who shot him fired.
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