Protesters seek changes to CPD’s foot chase policy

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CHICAGO — Protesters are demanding the Chicago Police Department change its foot chase policy after two recent foot pursuits turned into deadly shootings.

The need for a foot chase policy came up four years ago when the Justice Department issued a scathing report on CPD procedures.

Calls for such a policy are getting louder after two high profile incidents that ended with two deaths— one of them being the death of 13-year-old Adam Toledo.

In a draft, obtained by the Chicago Tribune, guidelines call for officers to make careful decisions when chasing potential suspects.

The issue of police foot pursuits came up Friday night when activists led a protest over the shootings of Adam and 22-year-old Anthony Alvarez.

They started at the police academy and then marched to the Fraternal Order of Police headquarters where they demanded the union president step down.

The Tribune reports that the draft, dated April 22 and circulating among police brass, suggests officers consider factors including the severity of the crime committed when running after someone. Some of the factors that need to be considered include whether the suspect has a gun and that officers weigh the risk of a chase to the public and themselves. Another suggestion is that officers stay with their partners during chases.

Adam and Alverez were killed days apart. Body cam video appears to show Adam tossing a gun before an officer shot him near 24th Street and Sawyer Avenue in Little Village March 29.

Video shows Alvarez running from officers while holding a gun near Laramie and Eddy street in Portage Park on the March 31.

Mayor Lori Lightfoot wants a temporary policy in place by summer.

Supt. David Brown, who implemented a foot chase policy when he was head of the Dallas Police Department, says a proposed policy is undergoing internal review.

He told reporters this week the department is “proceeding with a sense of urgency.” He said it’s really important for us to get it right.

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