CHICAGO (AP) — A Cook County judge has ruled attorneys for the Chicago police officer who shot to death Laquan McDonald cannot mention at trial that department higher-ups approved of the shooting.
However, Judge Vincent Gaughan ruled Thursday he will allow the defense to bring out that McDonald’s shooting marked the first time Officer Jason Van Dyke fired his weapon in 13 years on the force. Van Dyke is charged in the 2014 death of the 17-year-old McDonald as he walked away from police with a knife in his hand.
The rulings came as special prosecutors sought to bar Van Dyke’s attorneys from presenting what they consider irrelevant evidence or arguments.
Defense attorney Daniel Herbert said he will call experts to explain the dynamics of the shooting. Herbert also said he intended to call a witness who had been battered by McDonald while McDonald was using PCP.
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