Janice Walker has organized protests in the wake of the 2017 shooting death of her brother, Charles Macklin, 17, at the hands of an off-duty Chicago fireman who is the holder of a concealed carry license. Macklin was shot to death while trying off in a Jeep in the North Austin neighborhood of Chicago in August 2017. The Chicago fire lieutenant had left the engine of his Jeep running when Macklin jumped into the driver’s seat. According to a police report, the lieutenant ran to the front of the Jeep and shouted, “Get out!” When Macklin ignored the command and began pulling away in the vehicle, the fireman drew his weapon and fired through the open driver’s side window, striking Macklin in the chest.
The teen’s last words were, according to the Chicago Tribune, “Sorry, bro.” He died at the scene. Macklin was not armed at the time.
The lieutenant was the bearer of a concealed carry license and was not charged. In addition, he was not disciplined by the department, which found no violation of department rules.
Of the shooting, Macklin’s sister asked, “When has it ever become legal to shoot someone because they’re pulling off in your car?”
The Jeep in question, according to a police report, was parked on the right side of the street. Macklin tried to turn left and way from the curb when the lieutenant shot him. "Vehicle starts to move forward. (The firefighter) moves to the left and draws his concealed firearm and fires one shot through the driver’s window.”
According to Illinois statute, a person is justified in using force to defend his life or the life of another if there is a reasonable fear similar force against them is imminent.
Charles Macklin, RIP
Besides organizing protests over what Black Lives Matter considers was a murder, sister Janice Walker has created a Facebook page in an effort to obtain justice for the death. On June 15, she wrote on Facebook that she believes there was a coverup in the wake of the killing. While she wrote that her brother was “wrong as f--- and shouldn’t have gotten his ass in that Jeep,” she said that the shooter’s life was not in danger. She wrote that witnesses claimed to have seen an off-duty police officer “hand the gun over to the lieutenant,” thereby allowing the “off duty cop and lieutenant” to get “away with everything they did.” Walker’s statement ended by declaring, “No I will not not STFU and stop saying #JusticeForLilCharles because this will be an everyday thing until he gets justice!”
Spero News writer Martin Barillas is a former US diplomat, who also worked as a democracy advocate and election observer in Latin America. His first novel 'Shaken Earth', is available at Amazon.