On Wednesday, during a Chicago City council meeting, new Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot was caught on a live mic calling the vice-president of the Fraternal Order of Police a “clown.” As Fox 32 reported, “As Patrick Murray got up to speak, Lightfoot could be heard saying, ‘Oh, back again, this FOP clown.’”

The FOP released a statement calling Lightfoot’s remark “a misguided and dangerous thing to say to a 30-year veteran police officer, particularly at a time when the city is facing such chronic violent crime.”

Murray was attempting to support officers accused of a cover-up in the 2014 death of Laquan McDonald; those officers were fired on July 18 by a city oversight board. Police Officer Jason Van Dyke was convicted of second-degree murder and sixteen counts of aggravated battery in the shooting.

According to the July 18 decision, “Van Dyke’s immediate superior that night (Sergeant Stephen Franko) and three of Van Dyke’s fellow 8th District officers (Officers Ricardo Viramontes, Janet Mondragon, and Daphne Sebastian) who were on the scene when Mr. McDonald was shot … the Police Board finds that Sergeant Franko and each of the officers violated important Department rules and discharges each of them from the Police Department.”

The decision also stated:

The reports approved by Sergeant Franko contained several demonstrable and known falsehoods, including, among other things, that Officer Van Dyke was injured by Laquan McDonald, that Officers Van Dyke and Walsh were victims, and that Mr. McDonald assaulted and committed battery against them by attacking them with a weapon, using force likely to cause death or great bodily harm. Second, Sergeant Franko failed to ensure that the officers he supervised were utilizing the audio component of their in-car video systems, thus depriving the Department of a critical source of information about police conduct in connection with the killing of Mr. McDonald.

Of the three other officers, the decision stated, “Each of the three officers failed in their duty—either by outright lying or by shading the truth.”

Murray stated on Wednesday:

I’m here to talk about the police board hearing that I went to last Thursday. I knew walking in that those police officers had no chance of getting their jobs back. This is a politically put-together forum that was put together by the last mayor (Rahm Emanuel), and as a result of that I knew there was no chance, but let me just talk about the mayor. The problems that occurred with this case occurred on the fifth floor. They were concealed from the beginning and just made this worse and worse and these officers took the brunt of it. They did their jobs; they responded to the call and they did their jobs the way that they were.

The code of silence, like I said, started upstairs; the police officers, let’s talk about them. Four police officers: one’s a sergeant, three P.O’s. They served the city of Chicago for seventy years. In seventy years they had 177 honorable mentions; two department commendations, nine physical fitness awards; they had 13 other awards for attendance. They had one sustained (unintelligible) for a lost radio in seventy years of police work. They came to work every day; they’re pillars of their society; now what happens to them? What happens to these people? They’re fired; they can’t get their credentials; they’re not going to get their work and do what they want. This stigma is going to follow them forever. We are going to fight this.

He added, “Police officers across the city are looking at this message that was sent out by this board that you know what? If you’re going to respond to a scene, there’s a good chance you’re going to get fired if you’re not backed up.’

After she was caught, Lightfoot apologized, saying, “I’m sorry that I said it out loud,” according to CBS Chicago.

Video of Lightfoot’s remark here:

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