Commenting during a Harvard forum on failures in America’s justice system, Chicago’s former police superintendent described himself as a scapegoat for the Laquan McDonald shooting, an incident that sparked a backlash by city residents.
“All the things that people wanted from police oversight and outside investigatory exists, and at the end of the day, they didn’t like the results, and somebody had to take the fall, somebody had to take the hit,” said Garry McCarthy, who then waved and said, “Hi.”
McCarthy resigned in December at the request of Mayor Rahm Emanuel. The mayor cited a lack of public trust in police leadership following a white officer being charged in the death of McDonald, a black teen who was shot 16 times in 2014 on the city’s south side.
Days after the dismissal, the Justice Department launched an investigation into the Chicago Police Department’s use of force to see if there have been patterns of civil rights violations.
In the forum, McCarthy was critical of the city’s response. “At the end of the day police legitimacy in Chicago took an enormous hit and people are dying at record numbers right now as a result. There’s a consequence for that. We have to recognize that if we don’t like the way the system works, change the system.”