Chicago verdict raises hope of police being held accountable

A rare scene in the American justice system unfolded in a Chicago courthouse: A white officer stood before a mostly white jury and was convicted of killing a black teenager.

Jason Van Dyke was convicted Friday of second-degree murder and multiple counts of aggravated battery for shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times.

The conviction in the 2014 shooting came two months after a Texas officer was convicted in the killing of a 15-year-old unarmed black boy.

The pair of guilty verdicts could signal a shift in momentum after years of delayed arrests, non-indictments and acquittals.

Activists and advocates say their efforts, along with the ubiquity of cellphone camera evidence, could be changing the power balance between police and black communities.

Associated Press

Associated Press

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