Three Chicago police officers were found not guilty Thursday of attempting to cover up the 2014 shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald.
Det. David March and officers Joseph Walsh and Thomas Gaffney were acquitted Thursday of felony charges of conspiracy, official misconduct and obstruction of justice for allegedly attempting to prevent or shape the investigation.
Judge Domenica Stephenson repeatedly stated the state failed to prove conspiracy or obstruction of justice, saying mistakes do not equate to lying. She noted inconsistencies in witness testimony, a lack of proof that the three officers conspired to cover up the shooting and said other evidence in the case was "nothing more than speculation," NBC Chicago reports.
Prosecutors claimed the three conspired in lying and falsifying reports to conceal what really happened the night Officer Jason Van Dyke fatally shot McDonald.
Van Dyke was convicted of second-degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery in October 2018. He is scheduled to be sentenced Friday.