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Protesters shut down Chicago shopping district, demand federal probe in McDonald shooting

By
Amy R. Connolly
A protest similar to the one seen here on Nov. 25 shut down much of Chicago's famed Magnificent Mile shopping district on Black Friday. Demonstrators are calling for a federal investigation in the 2014 police shooting of Laquan McDonald. The 17-year old, who was armed with a small knife while fleeing police, was shot 16 times by officer Jason Van Dyke on the night of October 20, 2014. The Chicago Police, in response to a judge's order, released the dash cam video on Nov. 24, the same day that Van Dyke was charged with first-degree murder and fired from the police force. Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/UPI
A protest similar to the one seen here on Nov. 25 shut down much of Chicago's famed Magnificent Mile shopping district on Black Friday. Demonstrators are calling for a federal investigation in the 2014 police shooting of Laquan McDonald. The 17-year old, who was armed with a small knife while fleeing police, was shot 16 times by officer Jason Van Dyke on the night of October 20, 2014. The Chicago Police, in response to a judge's order, released the dash cam video on Nov. 24, the same day that Van Dyke was charged with first-degree murder and fired from the police force. Photo by Kamil Krzaczynski/UPI | License Photo

CHICAGO, Nov. 28 (UPI) -- Protesters shut down parts of Chicago's luxury shopping district Friday and demanded a federal investigation into the police shooting death of teen Laquan McDonald, alleging a wide-ranging coverup that spans a year-long investigation.

Protesters, led by the Rev. Jesse Jackson Sr., U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush and other black leaders, halted traffic along Chicago's famous Magnificent Mile on Black Friday, demanding the city's top leaders resign. Police kept their distance from the protesters and blocked traffic from entering Michigan Avenue.

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Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke has been charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of 17-year-old McDonald on Oct. 20, 2014. Dashboard camera video, made public just days ago, shows Van Dyke shooting the teen 16 times in about 15 seconds. Many activists have called the incident a "modern-day lynching."

Demonstrators chanted "Stop the cover-up!" and "16 shots! 16 shots!" They want significant changes at the Chicago Police Department.

RELATED Protests erupt in Chicago after release of police video; officer charged with murder

Police Supt. Garry McCarthy lauded his officers for a "remarkable" job monitoring protests to ensure they remain peaceful.

RELATED First-degree murder charge expected for Chicago police officer who killed black teen

"That's why we're not having problems that other cities are having, or have had in the past," McCarthy said before Friday's march. "We're going to facilitate the protests. We're trying to help them do what they want to do, quite frankly, and we're going to do it in a professional manner; but we will not allow criminal behavior, quite frankly. We're not going to stand by and watch something happen. We're not going to let windows get broken, and stand by idly watching it happen. We're not going to let places get looted. It's just not going to happen."

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