A Chicago police officer has been cleared of all charges in the March 2012 shooting death of 22-year-old Rekia Boyd.
Boyd was fatally shot by off-duty police officer Dante Servin more than three years ago while she was standing near a park with a group of friends. Servin, who lived nearby, called police and complained that the group was “drinking, fighting and smoking drugs.”
The officer said that he feared for his life after seeing one of the individuals, Antonio Cross, allegedly pull out a firearm from his waistband. Servin, facing the opposite direction, blindly fired shots over his shoulder into the group, striking Boyd in the head and Cross in the hand. Cross sustained minor injuries, but Boyd died the following day at a hospital. Investigators never found a gun that belonged to Cross, only a cell phone that had fallen.
Servin was charged with involuntary manslaughter, reckless conduct and reckless discharge of a firearm. Earlier today, a Cook County judge cleared him of all charges.
Judge Dennis Porter claimed that although Servin fired the gun that killed Boyd, prosecutors failed to prove that he did so recklessly. The verdict sparked outrage within the courtroom and amongst Boyd’s family members.
“What exactly [does] that tell you?” questioned Boyd’s brother, Martinez Sutton, at a press conference following the verdict. “That tells you that anybody with a badge can get away with shooting any one of y’all out here.”