CHICAGO — Former Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke will not face federal charges in the fatal shooting of LaQuan McDonald, prosecutors said Monday.
John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, said that the U.S. Attorney’s Office would not pursue a successive prosecution because no general murder charge under federal law would apply.
McDonald’s family was in agreeance, declining the option to pursue a second conviction.
“The decision not to pursue a federal prosecution is consistent with Department of Justice policy and was made in consultation with Mr. McDonald’s family,” prosecutors stated.
Activists have called for civil rights charges to be brought forth against Van Dyke since his release from prison in February after serving a little more than three years for the murder of McDonald.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office adds that federal prosecutors would have to prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that Van Dyke’s acts were deliberate and not out of fear, mistake, or bad judgment.
Police dashcam video captured Van Dyke shooting 17-year-old McDonald 16 times. In October of 2018, Van Dyke was found guilty of second-degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery. A judge sentenced Van Dyke to six years and nine months.
Now released, the ex-Chicago cop remains under supervised release for three years.