Judge Gaughan: ‘One act, one sentence, one crime,’ Van Dyke sentenced

Women who have had a family member killed by a Chicago Police officer speak to a small crowd outside the Leighton Criminal Courthouse on the day Jason Van Dyke was sentenced to 81 months in prison.

By Molly Walsh, Managing Editor

Former Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke was sentenced to nearly seven years in prison for the murder of Laquan McDonald, concluding one of the most racially charged trials in Chicago history.

Cook County Judge Vincent Gaughan sentenced Van Dyke to 81 months in prison on the charge of second-degree murder. Gaughan did not sentence Van Dyke on the aggravated battery charges, which would have caused a longer prison term.

“It’s just so senseless that these acts have occurred,” Gaughan said before announcing the sentence. “You can see the pain on both sides of the family.”

Van Dyke was found guilty Oct. 5 on 16 counts of aggravated battery with a firearm and one count of second-degree murder for the 2014 fatal shooting of 17-year-old McDonald, as reported by The Chronicle.

Prosecutors asked for a term of 18-20 years. Van Dyke must serve a minimum of two years before considering probation. His attorneys have 30 days to appeal the sentence.