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Chicago Officer Charged With Murder in Shooting of Black Teen


Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke is seen in an undated picture released by the Cook County state's attorney's office in Chicago.

Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke is seen in an undated picture released by the Cook County state's attorney's office in Chicago.

A police officer in Chicago has been charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of a black teen.

Veteran Officer Jason Van Dyke turned himself in to authorities Tuesday before a scheduled court hearing.

Van Dyke is shown on a police car video shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald 16 times during an incident in October 2014. Many of those rounds were fired after McDonald was on the ground.

The Chicago Tribune quoted police saying that during his encounter with officers, McDonald was behaving erratically, had drugs in his system and refused commands to drop a 4-inch knife.

The newspaper said federal authorities were also investigating whether Van Dyke violated McDonald's civil rights protecting him from excessive force by police.

The announcement of the charges came less than a week after a court ordered city officials to release the footage of the shooting.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Monday called on religious and community leaders to appeal for calm and peaceful demonstrations.

Meanwhile in Minneapolis, police Tuesday arrested two men for allegedly shooting and wounding five people near a Black Lives Matter protest outside a police station.

The suspects are described as a white man and a Hispanic.

They allegedly opened fire at protesters who had told them to leave the protest, thinking they looked suspicious. None of the wounds are life-threatening. Police are searching for others who may have been involved.

The demonstrators have been camped out in front of the police precinct for more than a week, protesting the police shooting of 24-year-old Jamar Clark earlier this month.

Witnesses say Clark was handcuffed when he was shot. Police deny the charge and say Clark was interfering with an ambulance crew helping a crime victim.

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