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Judge: Conspiracy charges stand against Chicago officers

November 6, 2018
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Former Detective David March, from left, Chicago Police Officer Thomas Gaffney and former officer Joseph Walsh appear at a pre-trial hearing with Judge Domenica A. Stephenson at Leighton Criminal Court Building in Chicago on Tuesday, Oct. 30, 2018. Prosecutors have laid out their case against the three Chicago police officers accused of participating in a cover-up of the fatal shooting of Laquan McDonald. (Zbigniew Bzdak/Chicago Tribune via AP, Pool)

CHICAGO (AP) — A judge has refused to dismiss charges against three Chicago police officers accused of participating in a cover-up surrounding the fatal police shooting of black teenager Laquan McDonald.

Cook County Judge Domenica Stephenson ruled Monday. The bench trial is scheduled to start Nov. 26.

Officer Thomas Gaffney, former Detective David March and ex-Officer Joseph Walsh have pleaded not guilty to conspiracy, official misconduct and obstruction of justice.

Prosecutors allege the men falsely claimed in their reports that McDonald had battered, assaulted and attacked white police officer Jason Van Dyke, who shot McDonald 16 times in 2014.

A jury last month convicted Van Dyke of second-degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated battery.

Defense attorneys had attacked the prosecution’s case as a sham and asked that the case be dismissed.

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