A crash between Chicago police officers hustling to a crime scene has left a local family grieving and seeking answers after the death of the family’s matriarch.
On Saturday night, two Chicago police vehicles, a marked van and an unmarked SUV were responding to a call when they collided near an intersection in the 1200 block of North Laramie. After the vehicles collided, they hit several other vehicles, including the car of 84-year-old Verona Gunn.
Gunn’s family viewed surveillance video of the crash today with police Supt. Eddie Johnson. That video has not been released publicly, but another view of the crash from startling cell phone video has been. NBC 5 is sharing it with permission from the victim’s family.
Dwight Gunn, Verona’s son, said his family is outraged.
“This is tragic,” he said. “I may appear articulate, but we are angry. The family is angry because this was 100-percent avoidable.”
Verona Gunn was a passenger in a car driven by her daughter when they were struck by a police vehicle at Division and Laramie.
The officers were responding to a call of another officer in trouble.
The offender had already been taken into custody when the massive crash occurred.
Attorney Andrew Stroth represents the Gunn family.
“The video clearly shows that officers did not heed to a red light,” he said. “They didn’t slow down … and as a result their mother has died.”
On Tuesday he and family members viewed surveillance video of the crash with police Johnson.
“What we see is what we already knew,” Dwight Gunn said. “It’s in plain sight.”
Family members have received apologies from the superintendent and also Mayor Lori Lightfoot. But they say what they really want is change in police procedures.
“We cannot allow our mother’s death and pain at moment to not have some type of purposeful outcome,” Gunn said.
The Civilian Office of Police Accountability is investigating the crash along with the Chicago police Major Accident Unit.
The officer who was driving the vehicle that caused the crash is currently on administrative leave.