CHICAGO — Chicago's police watchdog agency has determined the 2012 fatal shooting of a 15-year-old by an officer was "unprovoked" and "unwarranted."
The Independent Police Review Authority issued its ruling late Thursday in a rare decision.
A Chicago police officer shot and killed Dakota Bright in November 2012 behind a home near 67th and south Indiana in the Park Manor neighborhood.
A little over a year ago, the city of Chicago settled with the Bright's family for about $1 million.
The teen was shot in the back of his head.
"I try and live with this every day. Some days I feel like he's right there next to me," said Panzy Edwards, Bright's mother.
IPRA sustained complaints that the unnamed officer used unreasonable force when he shot the teen, who was fleeing from police and was 50 feet (15 meters) away when he was struck. The officer said he thought the teen was armed and turned toward him. Investigators didn't find a weapon.
IPRA challenged the credibility of the officer's account, noting inconsistencies in his statements. The current status of the officer wasn't revealed.
"We want him (the officer) separated from the department completely in addition to that we want Kim Fox to press first degree murder charges on this officer for what he did to Dakota Bright," said community activist, William Calloway.
In the last 10 years, out of hundreds of police involved shooting investigations, IPRA has only found seven unjustified, five of those rulings happening after the LaQuan McDonald case.
For a grieving mother, the news of the IPRA ruling is another step towards healing.
"It seems like it's gotten harder for me. By the grace of god it gets better with this ruling, with this ruling it gets better," said Edwards.
Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson will now review IPRA's findings and if he agrees with the, will make a disciplinary recommendation.
The case the goes to the Chicago Police Board, which will decide if the officer should be suspended, fired or acquitted.