Chicago’s City Hall press office was made aware of the possibility of a Laquan McDonald dashcam video Dec. 8, 2014; only two months after the black teenager was shot 16 times by a white police officer, emails obtained by Chicago NBC affiliate WMAQ-TV revealed. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s spokeswoman, Shannon Breymaier, was part of an e-mail chain inquiring about whether the city could release video of the shooting, and a top assistant in the corporation counsel’s office replied, “This is not a lawsuit as of now,” WMAQ reported.
Another email chain, dating to February -- which included top press aides Kelly Quinn and Adam Collins -- featured an article by freelance journalist Jamie Kalven, who first reported the autopsy results in the McDonald case. “The account of the incident given by the police cannot be true,” Kalven wrote,
Emanuel has been under fire since last month, after the release of the dashcam video showing Chicago police Officer Jason Van Dyke fatally shooting McDonald 16 times. Van Dyke has since been charged with first-degree murder. City officials, including Emanuel, had initially refused to release the video, and critics have accused the mayor of keeping the footage out of the public eye until after he won a tough spring election for a second term.
In response to the release of the graphic video, protesters have flooded the Chicago streets, calling for the resignation of Emanuel. Roughly 100 medical students wearing white lab coats staged a "die-in" protest Thursday morning at Chicago City Hall, calling for the mayor's resignation, and state Rep. LaShawn Ford, a Chicago Democrat, even filed a bill earlier this week to allow for the recall of Emanuel.
"We want Rahm Emanuel to resign because we're tired of the cover-up. We're tired of all of the police brutality. We're tired of the systemic racism in Chicago and something needs to be done about it," Rush University medical student Paris Austell said, WLS-TV reported.