Former suburban Chicago police officer charged two years after deadly capturing of Black teen: “We’re lastly getting justice”

Fired Waukegan officer dealing with homicide prices for 2020 capturing

Fired Waukegan officer dealing with homicide prices for 2020 capturing


A former suburban Chicago police officer who was fired after he shot right into a automotive two years in the past, killing a Black man and critically wounding the person’s girlfriend, has been charged with second-degree homicide and involuntary manslaughter, authorities introduced on Thursday.

Police Shooting Illinois
This undated photograph supplied by Lake County State’s Legal professional’s Workplace exhibits former Waukegan Police officer Dante Salinas. 


In a information launch, the Lake County State’s Legal professional’s workplace mentioned it had unsealed grand jury indictments towards former Waukegan police Officer Dante Salinas within the Oct. 20, 2020, capturing that killed a 19-year-old native man, Marcellis Stinnette, and wounded his girlfriend, Tafara Williams, based on the Lake County State’s Legal professional’s workplace. Salinas additionally was indicted on felony counts of aggravated battery inflicting nice bodily hurt and official misconduct.

Stinette’s grandmother, Sherrellis Stinnette, praised the announcement of the fees, CBS Chicago reported.

“My grandson’s blood is crying out from the grave, ‘Grandma, we’d like justice!’, and we’re lastly getting justice,” she mentioned.

On the evening of the capturing, one other Waukegan officer stopped the couple’s automotive and was questioning them when Williams immediately drove off, based on investigators. The officer pursued them and Salinas responded to his name for assist and joined the chase.

Williams drove off a roadway and crashed, then put her automotive in reverse in an try to depart the world, the Lake County State’s Legal professional’s workplace mentioned in a information launch Thursday.

Salinas had climbed out of his squad automotive and was not within the path of Williams’ automotive however he “fired a number of photographs into the motive force’s aspect of the car because it continued to reverse previous him,” based on the information launch.

Williams was wounded and Stinnette, who prosecutors mentioned had dedicated no crime, was killed.

Marcellis Stinnette Protest
The positioning of a prayer vigil held for Marcellis Stinnette on October 27, 2020, in Waukegan, Illinois. 

Kamil Krzaczynski/Getty

An professional analyzing the trajectory of the bullets was capable of decide the situation of Salinas and the trajectory of his bullets, Lake County State’s Legal professional Eric Rinehart mentioned within the assertion.

Video launched by the town of Waukegan inside days of the capturing didn’t present the precise capturing, as a result of Salinas didn’t activate his physique digital camera till after capturing Stinnette and Williams – a choice that received him fired from the division, CBS Chicago reported. The footage did doc Salinas explaining why he fired into the automotive, as he’s interviewed by one other officer.

“It backed up proper at me; it was in between my squad automotive…. I fired my weapon as a result of I assumed I used to be the subsequent one run over,” Salinas says.

Salinas surrendered to authorities on Thursday and a decide ordered that he be held on $350,000 bond, prosecutors mentioned. Second-degree homicide carries a most jail sentence of 20 years and manslaughter carries a most time period of 5 years. If Salinas is convicted of each prices, the sentences would run concurrently.

Douglas Zeit, an lawyer who represented Salinas in court docket on Thursday, declined to remark when reached by telephone.

Williams has been charged with aggravated fleeing. She turned herself in to authorities as properly and a decide ordered that she be launched on a $50,000 recognizance bond.

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