Laquan McDonald was trying to start over, school says

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Laquan McDonald

CHICAGO — The teenager who was shot and killed by a Chicago police officer had lived a troubled, disadvantaged life and had at least one previous brush with the law.

Illinois Department of Children and Family Services’ records show that Laquan McDonald was a ward of the state when he died, having spent years being shuttled between different relatives’ homes and foster care from the time he was 3.

But school officials and the McDonald family lawyer say there were signs Laquan was trying to get his life in order, having enrolled in an alternative high school where he was making good grades.

McDonald was shot 16 times in October 2014 by officer Jason Van Dyke. Van Dyke was charged this week with first-degree murder.

Several protests have taken place in Chicago since authorities released the dashcam video of the shooting, and another is planned for Friday.