Activists call for release of bodycam footage in police shooting death of boy, 13

The teenager, Adam Toledo, was fatally shot in the chest by Chicago police according to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.

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The Chicago Police Department are being demanded to release bodycam footage in the fatal shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo at the hands of law enforcement.

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According to CBS Chicago, by Thursday night, the calls to make the footage available grew as details of the victim became public knowledge. The Civilian Office of Police Accountability noted it would not be a quick process. Whether the video is released or not, however, the family of Toledo will be able to view the footage. The outlet reported the initial shooting happened on Monday.

However, the Chicago Police did not make public a 13-year-old was fatally shot until that information was released three days later by the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.

COPA is taking all legal action to have the video released. Toledo’s age could be a hindering factor as laws with regard to juveniles currently prohibit it.

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(Photo by Mark Makela/Getty Images)

Prior to Toledo’s age being revealed, police shared information of an officer-involved shooting. According to the tweet, law enforcement claimed “Officers observed two subjects in a nearby alley, one subject fled on foot which resulted in an armed confrontation. One subject shot and killed. 2nd subject in custody. Gun recovered on scene. COPA investigating.”

After the ME’s office released information that Toledo had been fatally shot by police, superintendent of the Chicago Police Department David Brown released a statement.

“My greatest fear as the Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department has been a deadly encounter between one of our own and a juvenile especially given the recent rise in violent crimes involving juveniles throughout our city,” Brown wrote. “Unfortunately, this fear became a reality earlier this week. Any loss of life is tragic, especially when it involves youth. On behalf of the entire Chicago Police Department, I extend my condolences to the family of the juvenile, who was fatally shot by a Chicago Police officer in the early morning hours of Monday, March 29, 2021.”

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ABC7 Chicago reported Toledo’s family said the adolescent wanted to grow up and become a police officer. Weiss Ortiz PC is representing the family and released an official statement regarding the shooting death of their loved one:

“Adam Toledo was killed early Monday morning, due to the unreasonable conduct of a Chicago Police Officer. We are confident that the Chicago Police Department and the Civilian Office of Police Accountability will conduct a thorough investigation, that there will be transparency, and that Toledo Family wilt find out the truth of what happened to Adam. Adam was killed on March 29th, 2021, but the Toledo Family was only notified of his death two days later. Adam was a seventh grade student at Garvey School, enjoyed sports and was a good kid. He did not deserve to die the way he did. The Toledo Family will seek justice for this reprehensible crime and requests privacy during this time of mourning. The Toledo Family is represented by Weiss Ortiz PC.”

“He was so full of life,” said Elizabeth Toledo, his mother, on Thursday according to the news outlet. “They just took it away from him.” She launched a GoFundMe campaign to help with funeral expenses. As of Friday morning, the fundraiser has exceeded its $15,000 goal with over $22,000 in donations.

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CHICAGO, ILLINOIS – APRIL 16: Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot arrives at Wrigley Field on April 16, 2020 in Chicago Illinois. Wrigley Field has been converted to a temporary satellite food packing and distribution center in cooperation with the Lakeville Food Pantry to support ongoing relief efforts underway in the city as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has addressed the violent tragedy on Twitter. She called on CPD to release the bodycam footage.

“As a mother of a 13-year-old myself, I can only imagine the incredible pain this boy’s parents are experiencing at this moment. My heart goes out to them,” she said in one tweet.

Mayor Lightfoot continued, “While the investigation is ongoing it is critically important that COPA release relevant videos first to the family, and then to the public, as quickly as possible, with appropriate protections, given his age.”

Police also said 21-year-old Ruben Roman Jr. was arrested on a misdemeanor count of resisting arrest. The officer involved in the shooting was placed on desk duty for 30 days while the investigation continues.

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