The raid ignited a firestorm of criticism and left a female social worker naked, handcuffed and crying while a dozen male officers searched her home.
The mayor is particularly upset because she said the incident not only attacked a woman’s dignity, but also severely eroded trust in the police and city government.
“It’s been painful and upsetting,” Lightfoot said.
With her voice cracking, Mayor Lightfoot acknowledged the lasting damage done to public trust when police broke down social worker Anjanette Young’s door nearly two years ago.
“There’s a lot of trust that’s been breached and a lot of trust in me that’s been breached,” she said. “(We) will win back the trust that we have lost this week.”
Young had just returned home from a night shift at Rush University Medical Center and was getting undressed and ready for bed.
When a heavily armed tactical unit stormed in, she was handcuffed while naked – only later given a blanket to cover her body.
It was a stunning violations of personal privacy and callous disregard for a woman’s dignity, a situation CPD Supt. David Brown said should have been self-evident to each of the dozen male officers present.
“If that was your mother, how would you want to be treated? If they don’t know right from wrong, they don’t need to be police officers,” Brown said.
It remains to be seen if any officers will be disciplined. COPA released a statement saying the investigation remains open nearly two years after the incident.
“Everyone deserves respect, it’s always the right time to do the right thing, we must be the first to admit our mistakes,” Brown said.
The department’s warrant process has changed in the following ways after the incident.
- Information from a Criminal Informant must be corroborated by and independent, unpaid third person
- Approval from two high level supervisors
- Body worn cameras must be worn and activated by every officer involved
- At least two uniformed officers must be part of the team
- If Children are present, officers must take “due care to minimize trauma”
- If there is a wrong address that requires an investigation to be initiated
The mayor said she was furious to learn that Young’s initial request to see the video was denied by the city’s lawyer and that the corporation counsel sought to conceal the video from the public.
She vowed to make it easier, particularly for crime victims, to get information about their own cases.
Lightfoot also said she would review all search warrants from this year and release the internal emails from the mayor’s staff about the young case.
She also wants to meet face-to-face with Young for a private conversation.