An off-duty Chicago cop who claimed he was in fear for his life when a man pointed a cell phone at him, prompting him to open fire, striking a woman in the back of the head, was found not guilty of manslaughter charges today.
And his lawyer didn’t even have to present a defense.
Instead, Judge Dennis Porter threw out the charges today after prosecutors presented their case, stating that they did not present enough evidence that Dante Servin acted recklessly.
However, the City of Chicago figured he acted recklessly enough by dishing out a $4.5 million settlement to the family of Rekia Boyd in 2013, one year after the shooting.
After all, how can it not be reckless to fire a gun over your shoulder through a car window towards a group of individuals that already had their back turned simply because one pulled out a cell phone and pointed it towards you, possibly to record some video after words were exchanged?
It was no different than a gang banging drive-by shooting that place regularly in the Windy City.
Except Servin is a member of a legal street gang that apparently includes Judge Porter.
A chaotic scene erupted in the courtroom as a brother of the victim, Rekia Boyd, stood at word of Servin’s acquittal and shouted and cursed before the judge had stepped down from the bench.
Later, as Servin walked from the Leighton Criminal Court Building with about 10 off-duty Chicago cops flanking him, a crowd of about 40 exploded in anger while someone hurled what appeared to be a lunch bag at the officer.
Prosecutors had charged Servin with involuntary manslaughter, not murder, saying he acted recklessly when he fired five shots over his shoulder from inside his car in the direction of four people who had their backs to him in a dark West Side alley.
His attorneys said Servin was in fear for his life after Antonio Cross, one of the four, pulled an object from his waistband, pointed it at the officer and ran toward his car.
Boyd, 22, was fatally shot in the back of the head. Police found only a cellphone at the scene near Douglas Park.
The incident took place in March 2012 when Servin and a group of individuals had a verbal argument in his neighborhood. He had left home with an unregistered gun to buy a hamburger when he came across four people in an alleyway, so he told them to move to a nearby park because apparently they were making noise.
One of the men in the group, Antonio Cross, thought Servin was trying to buy drugs and told him to “move the fuck on.” Another man in the group also cursed at him.
Servin drove on, but looked back, telling investigators that he thought one man had pulled a gun from his waistband, which is when he pulled out his gun and fired five times over his shoulder, striking Boyd in the back of the head, who died the following day.
Cross, who was struck in the hand, was charged with assaulting an officer, but that charge was dropped when the closet thing to a weapon he had was his phone.
Servin, meanwhile, was assigned to desk duty since November 2013 when he was charged, still allowed to collect his $87,000-a-year salary.