Mayor Lori Lightfoot says Chicago police officers who cover up or remove their name tag and/or badge numbers should be fired following a Chicago Reporter investigation uncovering multiple instances of officers engaging in the practice during protests over the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd.
On Friday, Lightfoot said her administration is “actively working to identify” the officers.
“It won’t be tolerated,” she said at a Friday news conference.
The Chicago Police Department had already opened at least one investigation into an officer for covering his identifying badges. The investigation was opened on Wednesday, June 3, according to CPD spokesperson Luis Agostini.
Agostini told the Reporter that there were currently “several” open investigations related to police misconduct.
When questioned by the Reporter about the multiple instances captured on photo and video, the department promised to investigate every allegation.
As in many cases of police misconduct, the process may not be swift. The Civilian Office of Police Accountability along with the Chicago Police Board will work to investigate and ultimately render a verdict for each case.
If it is deemed that an officer violated policies, then the case will land on the desk of police Superintendent David Brown. From there, Brown can decide if he agrees with or disputes the verdict. If he disputes the ruling, it is then kicked back to one member of the police board. If Brown and the board member don’t agree, the case is decided by the entire board.
But Lightfoot sent a strong message Friday, saying that in her view, those who engaged in the deceptive practice “forfeited their right to be Chicago police officers.”
The news comes while another Chicago police officer is being investigated after being photographed giving two middle fingers to protesters, as reported by Block Club Chicago.
Since last weekend’s protests, there have been numerous allegations of police misconduct from both protesters and journalists, with videos, photos and news coverage showing instances of officers who appear to be acting outside CPD policy.