Following is a statement from mayoral candidate Lori Lightfoot in response to Saturday’s police shooting.
“The loss of Mr. Harith Augustus’ life is a tragedy, and my condolences and prayers go out to his family, particularly his young child and other loved ones as they mourn his death.
“It is critically important that the Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) move forward swiftly, independently, and thoroughly in its investigation. The public has the absolute right to understand all of the circumstances that led to the use of deadly force against Mr. Augustus.
“Superintendent Johnson made a wise decision in releasing a body camera video expeditiously. Consistent with policies recommended by the Police Accountability Task Force and adopted by the city in February of 2016, all relevant videotapes, audio, and initial police reports must be released as soon as possible, balancing the importance of the integrity of the COPA investigation.
“In addition, COPA must address the subsequent circumstances in which members of the police engaged with observers and protesters who gathered in the wake of the shooting. With the caveat that video can only provide a snapshot in time from a particular vantage point, there are several images of police interactions with members of the public that are very troubling. The images I saw from a variety of sources raise serious questions about supervision, use of force and equipment, as well as tactics deployed.
“The public has a right to understand the circumstances that led to injuries of the public and police at the Jeffrey Plaza and adjacent parking lots. It is imperative that both the CPD and COPA address these issues as swiftly as possible in the coming days.”