The Chicago woman whose house was wrongly raided by police in 2019 is accusing Mayor Lori Lightfoot of breaking a promise after the city moved to dismiss her case.
Anjanette Young and her attorney have called out Lightfoot and the Chicago city law department for their lack of cooperation during the case. “I stand here, approximately 846 days of living the trauma that was caused to me, by the city, by the Chicago Police Department, and I call it reckless," Young said.
Police broke down Young’s door with a battering ram while acting on erroneous information in search for a suspected felon in Feb. 2019. Released body cam footage showed that Young was undressed at the time, and police placed her in handcuffs while she repeatedly told them that they had the wrong house. Lightfoot publicly apologized to Young after the footage was released, amid backlash for reports that her administration tried to block both Young and CBS Chicago from publicly releasing the footage.
Young told Chicago station WLS that Lightfoot promised to “make her whole” at a meeting in December where Young personally accepted the mayor’s apology. "And yet here we are almost six months later, and she's threatening to dismiss this case,” Young said.
WLS reported that in April 2020, the city’s attorneys rejected Young’s settlement demand and counter-offered with zero dollars. In late May 2021, a mediator got involved in the case.
Keenan Saulter, Young’s attorney, said that the biggest number the city offered during mediation was less than half of the settlement amount for a previous case similar to Young’s. According to WLS, the previous case settled for $2.5 million.
Young said, "It's been a very challenging time for me. I am often in tears about a lot of things. Very disappointed or disgusted at the mayor.”
Chicago’s law department released a statement saying that they have no choice but to take the case to court after Saulter rejected offers at mediation.
“We were hopeful that a robust discussion moderated by an experienced former federal judge would lead to a fair and judicious outcome - one that would have fairly addressed Ms. Young's traumatic experience, but also fair to the taxpayers,” the statement read. “Mr. Saulter chose to reject the City's offers and walked away from further settlement discussions.”
In response, Saulter said that the city made a take it or leave it offer early during the scheduled mediation, and refused to negotiate further, walking away from the mediation while Young’s team had another proposal on the table. He also accused the city of Chicago and its legal department of disrespecting and “attempting to bully” himself and Young.
"Regardless of how long it takes us to get to trial, how long it takes us to get justice. We're going to demand and fight for justice," Saulter said.