Controversy surrounds gun raffle, fundraiser for officer who killed 2

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CHICAGO — A fundraiser including a raffle for guns was held Friday for the Chicago police officer who fatally shot Quintonio LeGrier.

The fundraiser outraged some community leaders, who call it disrespectful and insensitive.

The fundraiser, held at the Chicago Fraternal Order of Police union hall, asked attendees for a $20 donation that entered them into the raffle for gift certificates for guns.

Proceeds go to Robert Rialmo. In 2015, Rialmo responded to a domestic disturbance and killed 19-year-old LeGrier as the teen held a baseball bat, and LeGrier's 55-year-old neighbor, Bettie Jones.

Outside FOP headquarters, community activists spoke out against the fundraiser.

“These type of events divide the community,” Tio Hardiman said.

Tyrone Muhammad with the organization Ex-Cons for Community and Social Change called the fundraiser “insensitive.”

“That just further fractures what we’re trying to do with decreasing violence in Chicago,” he said.

Ald. Nicholas Sposato was among those who attended to show support.

“There’s a brotherhood with the police department and with the fire department, and when our people are down and out we help them,” he said. “He wasn’t found guilty of anything. The superintendent said it was a justified shooting. He was defending himself.”

A jury awarded more than $1 million to LeGrier’s family in a wrongful death lawsuit, but a judge reversed it, noting jurors also found Rialmo feared for his life.

The City Council agreed to pay the Jones family $16 million.


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