Top Chicago attorney steps down over detainment of nude woman during raid

Mayor Lori Lightfoot accepted Corporation Counsel Mark Flessner's resignation, effective immediately.

The corporation counsel for the city of Chicago resigned Sunday in response to his office’s handling of the public release of video from last year’s raid on the home of Anjanette Young. 

The footage, which was made public over a year after the incident, shows Young naked and telling police 43 times that they were in the wrong house. 

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (above), who reportedly accepted Mark Flessner’s resignation immediately, said she’s “committed to a full review of everything that occurred surrounding this incident, will take corrective action where appropriate, and will hold people accountable.” (Photo by Joshua Lott/Getty Images)

“Today I have offered my letter of resignation as Corporation Counsel for the City of Chicago,” Mark Flessner wrote on Twitter. “It has been an honor to work alongside my friend (Mayor) Lori Lightfoot for the last two years.”

“It is clear that the raid of Anjanette Young’s home was a tragedy that we must learn from,” Flessner said in a statement. “Standing up for racial injustice and fighting for equality within our justice system are crucial matters that we must continue to work toward addressing as a community.”

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Mayor Lightfoot noted that she accepted Flessner’s resignation effective immediately. It’s not known if it was actually requested by her office.

“I am committed to a full review of everything that occurred surrounding this incident, will take corrective action where appropriate, and will hold people accountable,” Lightfoot told media outlets.

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Flessner’s resignation appears to stem not from the raid itself, but from the efforts of city officials in Chicago to keep the footage from being seen by the public. 

Young was denied a Freedom of Information Act request for body camera footage of the police raid. Even after it was granted, the city did not give Young’s attorney all of the footage. Further, the city sued to prevent it from airing on television. The city also sued to have Young sanctioned for violating a confidentiality agreement. 

These legal missteps may have cost Flessner his job as Chicago’s top attorney. 

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The February 2019 raid on Young’s home made national news as the social worker was handcuffed and left completely naked in front of male officers for nearly 10 minutes as they demanded information about a 23-year-old who was a known felon. 

The man police were looking for was actually in the next-door apartment. He was also wearing a tracking device.

Officers never checked the basic information originally given to them by an informant. 

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