CHICAGO — The family of a Roseland teenager who was run over by a CPD squad car says police ordered her to the ground before she was hit, as they filed a lawsuit against the City of Chicago Monday.
With CTA routes disrupted by protests the afternoon of May 31, family members say 15-year-old Astarte Washington and her brother were walking the 3.5 miles from their grandma’s house to home when they came upon a protest that turned to looting at 111th Street and south Michigan Avenue.
According to the family’s attorney, officers on the scene ordered Washington and others around her to get on the ground and not to move, and only she complied.
Video captured by a bystander shows what happened next, as another CPD officer gets out of his squad car, apparently does not put it in park, and it rolls backwards over Washington.
“It’s hard for me to watch that video; I just want justice for my grandbaby. Justice for Astarte,” her grandmother Bonita Washington said.
Astarte Washington suffered several broken bones, including her pelvis, as well as scars both physical and mental, according to the lawsuit filed on behalf of the family.
“It was a reckless disregard for the safety of Astarte Washington, there is no question about it,” said the family’s attorney Robert Fakhouri. “She was damned if she did and damned if she didn’t; that was reckless conduct.”
Last year, Washington was voted “Most Athletic” in her class at Dubois Elementary School and was a star on her basketball team. She got A’s and B’s in school, and her mother said she was the student council president.
Her mother says she can see the impact it’s had on her once-athletic daughter who dreams of playing with the WNBA.
“My baby want to play ball, she love to do things, and I’m scared that she’s not going to do it anymore,” her mother Tawana Washington said. “I’m just scared for my daughter.”
WGN has reached out to the city for comment, as well as a police department’s spokesperson, but has not yet heard back.