Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said Thursday that her staff informed her in November 2019 about a botched police raid that happened nine months earlier – thus revising her office’s Tuesday claim that she hadn’t learned about the February 2019 raid until this week.
The mayor stood by her claim that she hadn’t viewed video of the raid until this week but said she had no recollection of the November 2019 briefing from her staff when she spoke at a news conference Wednesday, Chicago’s WBBM-TV reported.
City police officers used a battering ram to enter the home of social worker Anjanette Young with their guns drawn, not realizing that the felon they were seeking actually lived next door, reports said. The police error was compounded by the fact that Young was naked at the time, changing her clothes after returning from work.
"What I now know, having looked at some emails, is my team knew that this was an issue of great concern for me, ‘issues’ meaning about the search warrants," Lightfoot said Thursday, according to the station. "They knew that I had tasked our chief risk officer to look into this and to work on reforming the policy, so this [raid] was lifted up to me as yet another example.
"Again, I don’t have any specific recollection of it," she continued. "It was in November  when I was probably focused on budget issues and getting our budget passed through the City Council but it was flagged for me."
The mayor pledged to make all the relevant emails available to the public, the Chicago Sun Times reported.
Lightfoot added Thursday that she was mistaken Wednesday when she claimed Young hadn’t filed a Freedom of Information Act request for police video footage from the raid, when Young actually had done so.
The mayor also said she apologized to a local reporter whom she had called "reckless and irresponsible" for asking her why the FOIA request had been denied, WBBM reported.
Lightfoot added that she has ordered a review of Young’s FOIA request to find out why it was rejected.
Young later gained access to the police footage as part of a federal lawsuit she filed against the city in November 2019 that was dismissed earlier this year, the Sun Times reported, adding that Young filed a new lawsuit this year in connection with the denial of her FOIA request.
The incident remains under investigation by the city’s Civilian Office of Police Accountability, according to the newspaper.