Nov 18, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Former Chicago inspector general defends Rahm Emanuel against cover-up allegations

Rahm Emanuel during a Senate confirmation hearing in Oct. 2021. Photo: Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images

There is no evidence that former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel or his administration tried to cover up the murder of Laquan McDonald by police, the city's former inspector general wrote in a letter to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, obtained by the Chicago Tribune.

Why it matters: Emanuel is awaiting a final Senate confirmation vote to become the U.S. ambassador to Japan.

Background: McDonald was a Black teenager who was fatally shot by Chicago police in 2014 during Emanuel's tenure as the city's mayor. His murder triggered massive protests, both because of its nature and the fact that the officers' body-cam footage was concealed for years.

What they're saying: “My office’s comprehensive investigation did not reveal any evidence that would support the lingering surmises and accusations of a ‘cover-up’ orchestrated out of City Hall. None," former general inspector Joe Ferguson wrote in the letter, per the Chicago Tribune.

  • Questions of a potential cover-up are, "not fair, because they are not grounded in fact, because the facts simply do not exist," he added, according to the Chicago Sun-Times, which also obtained the letter.
  • “I know, I was the inspector general for the city of Chicago leading the office which investigated the city’s handling of the aftermath of the McDonald murder," he added, per the Chicago Sun-Times.
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