Kane County State's Attorney Joseph McMahon was appointed Thursday as special prosecutor in the case against Chicago Police Officer Jason Van Dyke.
Van Dyke is accused of fatally shooting 17-year-old Laquan McDonald in October 2014.
Cook County Judge Vincent Gaughan appointed McMahon to the case after Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez recused herself in May.
McMahon, who has been the Kane County State's Attorney since November 2010, provided the following statement Thursday:
This is an important case involving serious allegations. It should be handled by a public prosecutor and an experienced prosecution team. This is a job I've been asked to do, and it's what the public expects of its state's attorneys.
My team will consist of four other prosecutors - Jody Gleason, the first assistant state's attorney for Kane County; Marilyn Hite Ross, the first assistant state's attorney for Winnebago County; Joe Cullen, a Priority Unit assistant state's attorney for Kane County; and Dan Weiler, a felony assistant state's attorney for Kane County.
I am limited in what I can say about this case now and at every stage pretrial. I cannot talk about any aspect of actual or potential evidence, and I cannot offer opinions about the case. We have one goal in this case, and that's to present the truth in court and seek justice.
Van Dyke's next court appearance is set for August 18.
Last Friday, a separate special prosecutor was appointed to investigate the officers who were at the scene of the McDonald shooting.
The appointments come after a group of civil rights lawyers requested that a special prosecutor be put on the Van Dyke case as well as an investigation into whether his fellow officers tried to engage in a cover-up.
The attorneys say they are unimpressed with McMahon's appointment.
"Given the high number of qualified attorneys in Cook County who have the experience, resources and who are fully independent from law enforcement, we're surprised and disappointed that all of them have been passed over in favor of the Kane County state's attorney and his team, which includes a former Cook County assistant state's attorney," they said in a statement.