Friday, October 5, 2018

EXTRA: Guilty, to the second degree!

A Cook County criminal court jury went with a "guilty" verdict Friday on a charge of murder to the second degree against Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke, which is an offense that theoretically could result in a probation sentence.
Van Dyke at the 'moment' of truth, as viewed on CLTV. Photo by Gregory Tejeda
Yet they also returned "guilty" verdicts on all the counts (16) of aggravated battery for each gunshot fired by Van Dyke against teenager Laquan McDonald. Those are charges that include mandatory prison time for each shot fired that could pile up into a significant sentence (hundreds of years) in a state correctional institution.

SO WHAT SHOULD we think? Personally, I'm confused. Did the jury think they were giving him a break; while wielding a wrathful hammer instead? Some are already expressing disgust at what they think was an attempt to issue a compromise verdict, rather than a truthful one.

I'm sure people will continue to quibble over this outcome for years to come. After all, it was so significant that the live TV reporting on the verdict caused the game show "Jeopardy" to be pre-empted, amongst others. A fact that I'm sure peeved certain people even more than the verdict itself.

We'll hear again from the court on Oct. 31. Will it be "Trick or Treat" for Van Dyke? Let the protests begin!


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