Congressman García’s Statement on Release of Body Camera Footage from the Police Killing of Anthony Alvarez

April 28, 2021
Press Release

CHICAGO, IL — Congressman Jesús “Chuy” García (IL-04) issued the following statement after the Civilian Office of Police Accountability (COPA) released body-worn camera footage from the police shooting of Anthony Alvarez:

“Police encounters shouldn’t end in killing, period. Yet two police encounters in fewer than 48 hours ended that way—first Adam Toledo and then Anthony Alvarez. Like in Adam’s case, officials tried to downplay Anthony’s killing by saying it began as a confrontation. Like in Adam’s case, that was a lie. The footage COPA released today reveals police appear to have shot Anthony in the back while he was running away.”

“The current consent decree, a 2019 order to implement recommended police forms, is not working. It includes provisions to assess whether the foot pursuit policy needs changing and to implement de-escalation tactics. Still two young people died in foot pursuits, less than 48 hours apart. Neither was acting violently toward police when shot.”

“The Chicago City Council must act immediately to increase accountability and overhaul violent, systemically racist practices by the police. As we have seen over and over again, police play by a different set of rules in Latino and Black communities. Change requires more than accountability—we must prioritize programs that invest in families and youth rather than violent policing. We need transformative change at the city, state, and federal levels to even begin to address the status quo. Until then, we are failing our communities.”