Facing growing anger over his administration’s handling of the release of a video showing a white Chicago police officer shooting a black teenager 16 times, Mayor Rahm Emanuel fired Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy on Tuesday.
McCarthy’s firing comes one week after Emanuel’s administration was forced by court order to release a year-old video that showed officer Jason Van Dyke pump 16 shots into Laquan McDonald, 17, on a Chicago street. Van Dyke was charged with first-degree murder last Tuesday, the same day the police dashcam video was released.
The firing of McCarthy marks an about-face by Emanuel, who said in recent days he was standing by McCarthy.
Emanuel announced McCarthy’s ouster at a late-morning news conference, saying he formally asked for his resignation on Tuesday morning.
“I have a lot of support and confidence in the work that he has done,” Emanuel said. “But our goal is to build the trust and confidence with the public. At this point and this juncture for the city, given what we’re working on, he has become an issue rather than someone dealing with the issue.”