City Of Chicago Settles With Estate Of Cornelius Ware For $5.25 Million

Last Friday, a federal court jury ruled in favor of the plaintiff, the estate of Cornelius Ware, and against the City of Chicago, in the liability phase of plaintiff's civil rights trial. The damages phase was scheduled to commence this week. However, over the weekend, the City of Chicago settled with the plaintiff's estate, agreeing to pay $5.25 million in damages. During the week long trial, plaintiff's attorney Jon Loevy argued that the Chicago Police shot Cornelius Ware when his hands were above his head in a gesture of surrender. The City countered that Ware pointed a gun at the Police Officers, which lead to the shooting. A gun was recovered from Ware's vehicle. Loevy argued that the Police Officers planted the gun, noting that there was no blood on the gun and that there were no fingerprints suitable for comparison obtained from the gun. The nine-person jury heard closing arguments last Friday, and reached their verdict late Friday afternoon. Judge Joan Lefkow presided over the trial.

Jury Hears Testimony In Ware v. City of Chicago, et al.

A ten-person jury began hearing testimony yesterday in the trial brought by Tammy Faye Grant, the mother of Cornelius Ware, who was shot and killed by Chicago police on August 18, 2003. In his opening statement, Jon Loevy, attorney for the plaintiff, told the jury Ware was shot as he sat in his vehicle with his hands above his head in a position of surrender. Margaret Carey, an attorney for the City of Chicago and Chicago Police Officer Anthony Blake, told the jury that Ware was shot after he pointed a gun at a Chicago Police Officer out the driver's side window . Carey told the jury that a gun was recovered from Ware's vehicle. The first witness called to the stand was Ms. Grant, who testified she saw her son with his hands above his head, and not holding a weapon. Upon cross-examination, Ms. Ware could not recall whether she gave a statement to Chicago Police when she arrived at the hospital to see her son. The second witness called, Richard Moore, was Ware's brother, and was 15 years old at the time of the shooting. Upon cross-examination, Moore testified that he heard Chicago Police yell "he's got a gun" before his brother was shot. He also testified that his mother told him she heard Chicago Police also yell "he's got a gun" before Ware was shot. Testimony is expected to last the remainder of the week.

Cornelius Ware v. City of Chicago, et al. - Jury Selection On February 5, 2007

Jury selection commences on Monday, February 5, 2007 in the case of Cornelius Ware vs. City of Chicago, et al. Ware was shot and killed by Chicago police on August 18, 2003 after a high-speed chase and after Ware pointed a revolver at the police. The Honorable Joan H. Lefkow is presiding over the trial in the Northern District of Illinois. The estate of Cornelius Ware is represented by Jon Loevy. The City of Chicago is represented by Joseph Polick and Margaret Carey.