FOP President won’t say how long union will employ VanDyke

By John Dempsey, WLS-AM 890 News

(CHICAGO) Chicago Fraternal order of Police President Dean Angelo is defending the union decision to hire indicted and suspended Officer Jason VanDyke, accused of murdering LaQuan McDonald, but Angelo will not say how long the job will continue.

Angelo told “The Big John Howell Show” on WLS there is a security risk to the officer if he continues doing janitorial work at the F.O.P. headquarters at 1412 W. Washington Blvd., if protesters continue demonstrating outside the building as they did on Thursday.

VanDyke, who is white, is awaiting trial on charges he murdered the black teenager in 2014 by pumping 16 shots into his body, many of them while McDonald was lying on the ground. A dashcam video of the encounter shows the teenager, while armed with a knife, was walking away from the officer.

Angelo says any decision that is made about VanDyke’s employment will be kept private.

“So what we do will be between us and Officer VanDyke and you know that’s gonna be our decision and we’re gonna keep it in house like we attempted to keep things in house before when one of our members decided to take it out of the house.”

Angelo says he is upset with the unnamed F.O.P. member who he says leaked the story of VanDyke’s hiring to the media.

“The word got out because we had one of our own members go to the media when they found out that officer VanDyke was working here. Rather than come to us.”

Angelo tells WLS he knows the identify of that union member and says the person faces possible sanctions from the union for speaking to the media about such a sensitive matter. ​

VanDyke was given the F.O.P. job when he could not find other employment, according to Angelo who also says the union tried in vain to help the officer find work.

“We tried to offer opportunities. We pick up the phone and we have a very extensive list of people that will employ our members, whether it’s an unarmed security position or whether it’s on a truck, on a dock, and we were unsuccessful in this attempt in multiple attempts that we made on behalf of Jason because of the circumstances and because of the notoriety so it turns into a situation that there’s nowhere else to go, and there’s no other opportunities that are available to him.”

Angelo also says the notoriety of the case has helped to kill VanDyke’s wife’s business leading Zumba exercise classes, so the janitor job at the F.O.P. is the only income the family has right now.