CHICAGO — Former Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke will not face federal charges in the fatal shooting of LaQuan McDonald, prosecutors announced Monday.
John R. Lausch, Jr., U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois, said the U.S. Attorney’s Office will not pursue sequential prosecutions because no blanket charge of murder under federal law will s would apply.
The McDonald’s family agreed, declining the option to pursue a second conviction.
“The decision not to pursue federal prosecution is consistent with Department of Justice policy and was made in consultation with Mr. McDonald’s family,” prosecutors said.
Activists have been calling for civil rights charges to be brought against Van Dyke since he was released from prison in February after serving just over three years for McDonald’s murder.
The U.S. Attorney’s Office adds that federal prosecutors would have to prove “beyond a reasonable doubt” that Van Dyke’s actions were deliberate and not out of fear, error or poor judgment.
Police dash cam video captured Van Dyke shooting 17-year-old McDonald 16 times. In October 2018, Van Dyke was convicted 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-cop from Chicago remains on probation for three years.
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