Jason Van Dyke, the Chicago officer who shot and killed 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in 2014, has resigned from the Chicago Police Department.
Van Dyke was convicted last year of second-degree murder for the on-duty shooting. Because of the felony conviction, Van Dyke was de-certified as a police officer by the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board. The certification is a requirement for employment as a Chicago police officer and Van Dyke was facing termination.
That termination is currently pending before the Chicago Police Board. But Police Board Executive Director Max Caproni said the termination proceedings are being dropped because Van Dyke has formally resigned his position.
Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said Van Dyke resigned last week.
McDonald’s death, and the release of dashcam video showing the teenager walking away from police before Van Dyke opened fire, sparked protests in Chicago and forced major changes at the Police Department.
One year ago this month, a Cook County jury found Van Dyke guilty of second-degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery for each of the 16 shots he fired into McDonald. He was sentenced to 81 months in prison.
In an interview with WBEZ and the Chicago Tribune before his murder trial, Van Dyke said he thought he was a “great” officer, but he said he did not believe he would ever be a police officer again.
The police board, which makes the final decision in serious police discipline cases, fired four officers in July for lying to justify Van Dyke’s decision to shoot.
Patrick Smith is a reporter on WBEZ’s Criminal Justice Desk.