CHICAGO, IL- Much has been made of the officer-involved shooting in Chicago that resulted in a 13-year-old gang member being shot and killed by a CPD police officer.
While the mainstream media and opportunistic politicians immediately sought to blame the officer for the shooting, one detail has been lost in all of the smoke being blown.
Why was a 13-year-old out at two in the morning on March 21, and moreover why was he in possession of a gun?
On Fox News’ Ingraham Angle last Friday, the attorney for Officer Eric Stillman, the officer who was put in the impossible situation of having to shoot someone so young, insists that his ties to the Latin Kings, who allegedly provided the boy with the gun he was carrying that fateful night, are in fact to blame for his death, according to The U.S. Sun.
Attorney Jim Grace told Ingraham last week that the youth, Adam Toledo was among a group of Latin Kings gang members who had been indiscriminately shooting at cars on March 21, and that the officer was responding to a shots fired call when he came upon Toledo.
Even Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot appeared to agree that gang affiliation played a significant role in the incident.
“Gangs are preying on our most vulnerable, corrupting these young minds with promises of familia and lucre,” Lightfoot said. “None of us should accept that we have adults here and across Chicago preying upon vulnerable teenage boys.”
Grace agreed with Lightfoot’s assessment.
“How come no one is talking to the Latin Kings?” he asked.
“We’re vilifying a good police officer when we have a shooting every two hours in this city,” said Grace, who graduated from John Marshall Law School.
“We tell officers to be the sheepdogs. They go out there and do that. But then they tie their hands and say you can’t pursue anyone. If that’s the new progressive rules of policing, let us know so we know how we can act out there.”
In speaking to the Latin Kings, Grace singled out the gang for recruiting the young teen into their midst.
“The Latin Kings are the ones who recruited him, branded him with a tattoo and then had him out there in the middle of the night shooting at passing-by cars,” Grace said.
Grace also singled out the adult who was with Toledo on the night he was killed, Ruben Roman, and believes he should be charged in connection with the teen’s death.
He also slammed people who are more concerned about violence when it involves the police than the day-to-day violence plaguing the Windy City, Fox News reported.
“Do you realize we have…a murder every 11 hours in this city? We have a shooting every two hours in this city? And then they tell our police officers in roll call, ‘Go out there, get the guns, stop the violence, we need you to be the sheepdogs.’ And what do the officers do? They go out there and they do that.”
He then slammed progressives who are trying to “tie their [officers] hands” which prevents officers from doing their jobs, yet still expect police to stop gang violence.
“You can’t have it both ways,” he told Ingraham.
Grace continued, praising Stillman who was a decorated United States Marine Corps veteran and an officer who has served the city “honorably.”
“He doesn’t take this lightly. He understands that what he did and what he had to do—and all law enforcement officers across the country, the last thing they want to do is have to discharge their weapon and use deadly force.”
Grace said in closing that so-called “Defund the police” groups will make America’s city’s “unlivable” by tying officers’ hands and preventing them from doing their jobs.
Conversely, the Toledo family, who clearly failed as parents hired an attorney who labeled the killing of the teen “an assassination.”
“If you’re shooting an unarmed child with his hands in the air, it’s an assassination,” said Adeena Weiss-Ortiz.
She referred to still photos derived from the officer’s body camera as evidence Toledo was unarmed and surrendering when he was shot, and claimed it was irrelevant that he had a gun in his hand just a split second before he was shot.
She claims the body camera and other surveillance footage “speaks for themselves.”
“If he had a gun [clearly he did from the video] he tossed it,” she said. “The officer said, ‘Show me your hands. [Toledo] complied. He turned around.”
Grace meanwhile said Stillman’s actions were completely warranted.
“Toledo fled. The officer followed. He gave him commands to drop the gun. Toledo got to the fence and as he turns he has a gun in his right hand. Officer shot him.”
Grace continued, “His actions were consistent with the Chicago Police Department’s use-of-force guidelines and with the law.”
Footage released by the Chicago PD showed the officer pulling up to the location, where he immediately came upon two people, Toledo and Roman, who was forced to the ground.
Toledo fled on foot, and prosecutors told FOX 32 that it was Roman who fired the shots which initially prompted officers to respond to the area.
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Stillman pursued Toledo on foot and can be heard on camera telling the youth to “stop” and “stop right fucking now!”
Toledo stops for a moment by a fence and then turned toward Stillman, who yells, “Show me your fucking hand!”
Surveillance video from an area camera showed a somewhat different perspective of the police chase and Toledo appeared to reach behind the fence.
The footage later shows a gun on the ground alongside the fence only feet away from where Toledo had been standing. It appears that he ditched the weapon just a split second before he turned toward Stillman.
It has been estimated that Stillman had less than a second to make a decision if Toledo had the gun in his hand as he turned toward the officer, which he clearly did a split second earlier.
It is unclear what still photos the Toledo family had been looking at, but The Federalist reported that CBS News was caught deceptively editing the body camera footage which showed Toledo with the gun in his hand prior to the shooting.
Full video here. *At best*, CBS News looked at an explosive issue like a controversial police shooting & prioritized mobile screen viewing optimization over showing the full body camera footage (and thus edited out a key fact leading up to the shooting).https://t.co/b1P814LGjN
— Jerry Dunleavy (@JerryDunleavy) April 16, 2021
This was the second such incident involving CBS in a couple of weeks, after the network was slammed for selectively editing a press conference held by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis to make it appear he had given Publix, which supported his gubernatorial run, favorable treatment for dispersal of the COVID-19 vaccine.
In the Chicago shooting case, widely available bodycam footage showed Toledo holding a weapon split seconds before he was shot and killed.
However CBS News posted a clip to both its website, as well as its Twitter page which cropped out the footage showing the firearm being held by Toledo.
— Ryan Saavedra (@RealSaavedra) April 16, 2021
To make matters worse, the article accompanying the video never mentioned the fact that Toledo was armed.
Rather all the network did was a compilation that showed opposing views between Stillman, who said he shot Toledo due to being “faced with a life-threatening and deadly force situation,” and the Toledo’s attorney who claimed the teen was unarmed when he was shot.
Despite the fact that the gun was recovered at the scene, Lightfoot claimed in a ridiculous comment that there was “no evidence” Toledo fired the gun before he was shot.
Perhaps someone should inform Lightfoot that an officers doesn’t have to wait until they are shot at before defending themselves.
Another ignoramus, failed Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang tweeted that Toledo was “unarmed” when he was shot. More inflammatory rhetoric designed to inflame people.
Stillman, 34, is on administrative leave pending an internal investigation into the shooting, which is standard police procedure.
His attorney Grace believes he will be exonerated.
“Stillman has worked in some of the toughest neighborhoods in the city and served his country honorably overseas. I do not think he will be prosecuted for a crime,” he said.
“I do believe that if COPA [Civilian Office of Police Accountability] and the Police Department are fair and look at the undisputed evidence, he will be exonerated of any type of a charge.”
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