Tags: Al Sharpton | Rahm Emanuel | Resign | Chicago | Mayor | shootings

Sharpton: Rahm Emanuel Should Resign

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By    |   Monday, 28 December 2015 10:48 AM

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel should step down following the latest police shootings to stun his city, the Rev. Al Sharpton said Monday, complaining that the mayor "didn't even come back off vacation" to be in his city.

"I've never seen this kind of detachment in the years I've been fighting, whether I got along with the mayor or not," Sharpton, a panel guest on MSNBC's "Morning Joe" program, commented. "How do you stay in Cuba on vacation?"

Emanuel did issue a statement calling for reforms after a police officer shot and killed 55-year-old Bettie Jones, an anti-violence activist, on Saturday and a neighbor, Quintonio LeGrier, 19, who was an emotionally troubled college student who had returned home on holiday break, reports The Washington Post.
Jones, a mother of five, was "accidentally struck and tragically killed," authorities said.

Meanwhile, the police department commented in a short statement that they were "confronted by a combative subject" resulting in the "discharging of the officer's weapon." LeGrier's father called the police to report that his son, who had suffered from severe mood swings in recent months, had picked up a baseball bat, reports The Chicago Tribune.

"It is clear changes are needed to how officers respond to mental health crises," Emanuel said in his statement. "This afternoon I directed the new Acting Chief Administrator of the Independent Police Review Authority and the Interim Superintendent of Police to meet with each other as soon as possible to review the Crisis Intervention Team training, around how officers respond to mental health crisis calls. I have asked that they determine the deficiencies in the current training, and determine what steps can be taken immediately to address them."

LeGrier's mother, Janet Cooksey, told CBS affiliate WBBM that her son "wasn't just a thug on the street, he was an honor student in college and high school. Seven bullets were put in my son. Seven."

The eighth shot fired, Cooksey said, hit Jones, "an innocent lady who was just opening her door. Something is wrong with this picture."

Sharpton on Monday complained on the "Morning Joe" program that Emanuel has not done enough to deal with the situation in his city.

"You have a grandmother shot that one report's saying one of the bullets went through the door coming in," said Sharpton. "I mean, police go into the building, into the home with their guns drawn. So they say, oh, 'oops, an accident,' you kill a grandmother and then you shoot a young man that you claim had a bat."

And then the mayor, who is still under fire for holding back video from last year's shooting of teenager Laquan McDonald, until "past the election before the tape was released," couldn't come back from vacation and say to the family 'I bring my condolences, I want to have hourly briefings.'"

But in New York, former Mayor Rudy Giuliani would would have handled the issue right, admits Sharpton, noting that he'd had several issues with the Republican while he was in office.

"Rudy Giuliani would be on the scene and get hourly briefings," said Sharpton, but called Emanuel's lack of reaction "the height of arrogance."

In addition, complained Sharpton, Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner has also not taken action, said Sharpton.

"We've not heard this governor talk about a special prosecutor, we've not heard him say he would sign a bill for a recall, which a legislator has proposed for recall for the mayor of Chicago," said Sharpton. "He's not said anything. And why some of the local leaders in Chicago's giving him a pass I think is absolutely an outrage."

He told the program that the people of Chicago will need to make the decision about whether Emanuel should stay in office, but "certainly from where I sit, he should [resign]."

Jones was known as an activist who spoke out against police brutality affecting black Chicagoans living on the West side, where she'd lived all her life, reports The Tribune. LeGrier was a student at Northern Illinois University, where he was majoring in electrical engineering technology.

His mother told reporters her son was shot in the buttocks, proving he was turning away when he was shot, reports The Post, and she wants to know why a taser wasn't used instead.

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Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel should step down following the latest police shootings to stun his city, the Rev. Al Sharpton said Monday, complaining that the mayor "didn't even come back off vacation" to be in his city.
Al Sharpton, Rahm Emanuel, Resign, Chicago, Mayor, shootings
Monday, 28 December 2015 10:48 AM
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