Chicago police botched a home raid almost two years ago, but it just came to light last week. Police tried to block the release of their body cam videos. The videos showed a naked women in handcuffs.
Breonna Taylor was killed by police in a botched raid in March. More than one year earlier, police botched another home raid.
In February 2019, Anjanette Young was falsely arrested in her home. Police raided her home with drawn weapons pointed at her. Young was innocent and was released some 40 minutes after police broke down her door. She was naked the entire time except for a blanket police finally put around her.
ENOUGH BLAME TO GO AROUND
Eleven police officers and one police sergeant who raided Young’s home were placed on desk duty by Mayor Lori Lightfoot. There is currently an investigation into the botched raid by the Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA).
The fallout continued as Mayor Lightfoot also requested and received the resignation of the city’s Corporation Counsel, Mark Flessner. Flessner denied trying to hide the body cam videos.
“There is no excuse that this matter has languished for a year without any significant movement on the part of COPA,” Lightfoot said. “We all need to understand the particulars of why Ms. Young’s house was targeted, what happened while the officers were there, and importantly what happened afterwards.”
Chicago’s ABC7 Political Analyst Laura Washington believes the mayor is “probably going to fire more people.” Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara fired back. “You mean to tell me that nobody in the mayor’s inner circle knew about that video prior to Tuesday, like she’s claiming she didn’t know either,” he said.
The botched raid occurred before Mayor Lightfoot took office. Nevertheless, the mayor tried unsuccessfully in court to block WBBM-TV from airing the videos this week. Lightfoot vowed to make changes in the search warrant process. But Breonna Taylor was killed by police on her watch during the same kind of raid.
BODY CAM VIDEO REQUESTS DENIED
Young wanted the police officer’s body cam video to be released to show the public what happened to her. Chicago’s police department denied her Freedom of Information of Act (FOIA) request. They also denied a FOIA request by CBS2 News.
In fact, the city recently tried to block CBS2 News from airing a news report on the video. They even sought sanctions against Young and her attorney. The city of Chicago is now trying to distance itself from those sanctions. A spokesperson said trying to block the news organization from reporting the story “was a mistake.”
CBS2 News pursued the issue, asking why the videos were repeatedly concealed. The mayor’s office admitted it was a failure and promised that those who were responsible would be held accountable. There’s certainly enough blame to go around.
ABC7 Chicago News reported on the incident and the mayor’s response.
“I FELT I COULD HAVE DIED”
Anjanette Young recently obtained the body cam footage after a court forced the Chicago Police Department to turn it over to her as part of a lawsuit against them. The video shows police entering the home of the social worker at 7 PM on February 19, 2019. “It’s one of those moments where I felt I could have died that night,” Young said.
Young was changing clothes after work and was totally naked. Police put a short coat over her shoulders, then partially covered her with a blanket. She repeatedly told the police that they had the wrong address during the 40-minute ordeal. The police did indeed have the wrong address. The suspect lived next door.
It begs the question about what might have happened if that botched raid had been revealed and reviewed in 2019. Might there have been a change in police policies that would have prevented the death of Breonna Taylor during a similar raid on her home?
The Chicago Police Department and Mayor Lightfoot are now engaged in damage control. The nearly two-year-old body cam videos of the botched raid surfaced despite concerted efforts to keep them hidden.
One has to wonder how many other similar Chicago police body cam videos have never seen the light of day.
Image from: abc7chicago.com