A former Chicago police officer was sentenced to more than six years in prison on Friday for the shooting death of teenager Laquan McDonald.
Judge Vincent Gaughan sentenced Jason Van Dyke to 6 years and 9 months in prison for the 2014 killing.
Van Dyke, who is white, was convicted in October of second-degree murder and 16 counts of aggravated assault — one for each shot he fired at McDonald.
He faced up to 20 years in prison for the murder charge and 30 years for the aggravated assault counts.
The verdict was the first time in Chicago that a police officer was convicted in a fatal shooting.
Celebratory crowds took to the streets after the verdict was handed down.
“I’ve been told time and time again that the citizenry of the county of Cook is not going to be satisfied with a sentence that’s anything south of 20 years,” Pastor Marvin Hunter, McDonald’s great uncle, said after the sentencing, ABC News reported.
“However I want to say to everyone — everyone in the city of Chicago and across this country — that if they had sentenced him to one minute, it is a victory,” Hunter added.
“It is a victory because what has happened in this courtroom today has never happened in the history of this county and it sets a precedent and it sends a strong message to unjust police officers that now you can and will go to jail if you’re caught lying, if you’re caught breaking the law.”