Hundreds of video and audio recordings connected to 101 Chicago police shootings and use of force incidents were released Friday and posted online.
Chicago's Independent Police Review Authority, which investigates police-involved shootings and excessive force cases, released the information on a public online portal.
The materials are from police-involved incidents dating back to 2011 that are currently under investigation. IPRA released the records as it implements a new transparency policy, based on a recommendation from the mayor-appointed Chicago Police Accountability Task Force.
The task force -- which was formed in the fallout over the fatal police shooting of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald -- said specific audio, video and police reports should be made public within 60 days of a police-involved incident. Emanuel formally adopted the recommendation in February, and, going forward, video, audio and other materials will be made available online within 60 days of such an incident.
"The policy we are implementing today is a major step forward to promote transparency, and it makes us one of the leading cities in America to guarantee timely public access to this breadth of information involving sensitive police incidents," Emanuel said. "It is important to remember the thousands of hard-working men and women who quietly do dangerous and difficult work to keep us safe each and every day."
IPRA chief administrator Sharon Fairley added, "These past few months, as this city has struggled with so many questions about policing and about police accountability, it has been clear that we all agree that there's a lack of trust and that increased transparency is essential to rebuilding that trust."
An attorney who represented the independent journalist who pressed for what was the eventual public release of the police dash-cam video of the McDonald shooting called today's information release "long overdue."
"For years, IPRA has said letting this kind of information out will harm the ongoing investigations, but the video is going to be the same no matter when it's released," Matt Topic told the Chicago Sun-Times.
"Meanwhile, CPD has routinely put out their version of events when an officers shoots someone, whether through the (police) union, or just through the press," he added. "Then at the same time, they deny the importance of putting out these objective videos."