Officer charged with Laquan McDonald’s murder must keep coming to court

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CHICAGO — A judge says a Chicago police officer charged in the shooting death of black teenager Laquan McDonald can't skip any court hearings.

Jason Van Dyke's lawyer has been arguing that Van Dyke shouldn't be forced to attend hearings because he's been verbally abused and physically jostled by protesters when he comes to court. Van Dyke's father said the same thing at a Thursday hearing.

However, Cook County Judge Vincent Gaughan ruled Van Dyke must keep attending the hearing. The judge promised to beef up courthouse security.

Van Dyke is charged with first-degree murder in the October 2014 shooting of McDonald. The officer shot the teen 16 times — an incident captured on video and broadcast around the world.

Van Dyke contends he acted in self-defense and has pleaded not guilty.


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