Panel Denies Union Bid to Weigh In on Chicago Police Reforms

The Seventh Circuit on Wednesday denied as untimely a Chicago police union’s attempt to intervene in Illinois’ lawsuit against the city over police brutality against blacks and Latinos.

In August 2017, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan asked a judge to stop police officers from engaging in a pattern of excessive force against Chicagoans, an issue that the state says reached a “flashpoint” with the release of video footage in November 2015 showing police officer Jason Van Dyke fatally shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald.

Illinois says Chicago has paid close to $662 million in settlements, judgments and legal fees related to police misconduct from 2004 to early 2016.

In the months since taking legal action, the state has worked with the city to draft a consent decree to reform the police department, which has come under increased scrutiny for its treatment of minorities.