Yet another vigil for a slain Black teen sparked protest Tuesday night, as Chicago witnesses noticed officers exchanging “high-fives” at the scene.
More than 100 people gathered in the 3400 block of West Grenshaw Street yesterday at 7 p.m., where 16-year-old Pierre Loury was shot Monday evening after he allegedly threatened a Chicago police officer with a gun.
Metallic red and blue balloons were tied to a black iron fence as the crowd chanted “Justice for Pierre,” according to the Chicago Tribune. Those who came to pay their respects to the teen held fabric posters in remembrance of other young Black men killed by police.
As Harrison District officers were investigating an earlier shooting on Monday, Loury was pulled over by officers because his vehicle matched the prior car’s description.
Loury allegedly jumped out of the vehicle, and during the chase, he turned and aimed a gun at an officer, police said, citing a preliminary investigation. He was shot once in the chest while climbing a fence and was later pronounced dead at Mount Sinai Hospital in Chicago.
Among the crowd of mourners at Loury’s vigil were witnesses who said an officer reportedly gave another what could have been a celebratory “high five” at the scene.
Protesters took to the streets calling for justice, where two were later arrested, according to the Chicago Tribune.
“It’s the story of the police [that] everybody has a gun,” said Bionca Johnson, who was a neighbor of Loury’s. She said he had carried home groceries for her before.
“Half the time, these babies probably do have guns. They’re probably scared with everything they’re seeing on the news, so it’s like, ‘[I’m going to] shoot first before I get killed,’ ” Johnson said.
Incidents such as the 2014 shooting of Chicago teen Laquan McDonald have drawn increased support for officers to wear detectable devices — a way to document police activity and ensure that officers aren’t abusing their authority. The officer who shot Loury was not wearing a body camera, an issue that, if addressed, could alleviate similar occurrences, as well as the reportedly jovial behavior of the officer at the scene.
Officials say the officer has been placed on desk duty while the shooting is investigated.