Shooting Survivor Sues Chicago Police Over ‘Non-Pursuit’ Policy

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April 4, 2023

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(CHICAGO) A 24-year-old is suing the Chicago Police Department for failing to pursue the assailant who allegedly shot him in May 2022.

The plaintiff, Dakotah Earley, blames the city’s “non-pursuit policy” for the shooting that left him with a partially amputated leg and permanent brain injuries.

The suit alleges that the City of Chicago, along with Mayor Lori Lightfoot, Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown, and two unnamed police officers “directly caused Earley’s injuries” by failing to intervene and act on information police had on the alleged shooter, Tyshon Brownlee.

According to the lawsuit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois on Feb. 9, in the days leading up to Earley’s shooting, Chicago police were aware of a string of robberies allegedly involving Brownlee. Some of the robberies involved a stolen vehicle. An hour before the shooting, police officers were notified by police dispatch that a GPS tracker had located the stolen vehicle. However, police declined to pursue the vehicle and stated over the radio, “[W]e’re not following. We’re not chasing. Show us heading into [the station] to do an eluding report.”

The city enacted an interim non-pursuit policy in March 2021 following two separate police foot pursuits that ended in the shooting and killing of 13-year-old Adam Toldeo and 22-year-old Anthony Alvarez. The policy was officially adopted in June 2022 and gives officers guidelines to determine when they should and should not chase a suspect.

As a result of the police department’s non-pursuit policy, the city, mayor, and police department caused the police not to stop the stolen vehicle, stop Brownlee, and to protect Earley and residents of Chicago, according to the lawsuit. Earley is seeking compensatory damages in an amount to be determined at trial.

The defendants have not responded to the complaint. The Click contacted the city attorney’s office for comment and was told that the city does not comment on ongoing litigation.

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