Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Cops Injured by Fleeing Vehicle

  • A man fleeing the scene of a domestic disturbance hit two officers with a car early Wednesday morning in the East Garfield Park neighborhood.

    A woman in the 3200 block of West Carroll Street called police about 2:20 a.m. to report a domestic disturbance, police said.

    The woman asked to be walked out to her car. Police walked her out and found the man the woman had reported was inside a car.

    He tried to flee and hit the officers, a fence and a building.
Nothing life threatening. A speedy recovery wished to all.

There was another incident involving a fleeing vehicle on the south side:
  • Five people were hurt after a vehicle hit a bus stop Tuesday night after a police chase in the Roseland neighborhood.

    About 8:40 p.m., a vehicle traveling north on Michigan Avenue near 103rd Street struck another vehicle, said Larry Langford, a Chicago Fire Department spokesman. The first vehicle then hit the bus stop.

    The crash was the result of a chase that started when Calumet District officers tried to stop a vehicle for a traffic violation and the vehicle sped away, police said.
No life threatening injuries to the citizens,but the story seems to be the police were chasing it. The story says the driver fled a traffic stop, but no word on where it began that would indicate a pursuit. This asshole might have driven 50 feet around the corner and lost control.


CompStat Media

  • One day after Mayor Rahm Emanuel decried the rash of shootings over the Easter holiday weekend, eight people were shot across the city in less than seven hours.

    The ages of the victims — one teenager and seven men — ranged from 14 to 56.
Pretty soon, the media will be comparing this seven-hour stretch to other seven-hour stretches to come up with percentages that crime is up or down compared to the another seven-hour stretch from seven hours ago.

The weekly numbers have got to be pretty ugly, too. Sure we're getting 40 shot per weekend, but the numbers for Monday through Friday have got to be nearly as bad. Perhaps the guys over at can toss up some Sunday through Saturday numbers? We're going to bet it's between 60 and 80 people shot per week - call it 70 for the over/under.

Does that sound like "crime is down"? We don't have anything to compare it to, but 70 shot in a week sounds like a city out of control.

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Once again, everyone is picking up on our unfortunate shooting numbers.

Yahoo news has a front page story up - we'll link it here, but it turns out to be more anti-gun screeds from the usual suspects.

The Guardian and Western Journalism have picked up on the Chicago Magazine story regarding fudged numbers. FoxNews has been running a few features along with the Huffington Post people.

And with 7 more shot tonight, Rahm has to be fuming, watching his national ambitions burn in a haze of powder smoke.

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Madigan Lawlessness

Someone on the Republican side, the supposed party of "fiscal discipline," noticed that Illinois was broke and said something about it - after Madigan held a number of votes with no one actually around to vote:
  • Republican statehouse leaders ripped a proposal to give $100 million to construction efforts for President Barack Obama’s presidential library, arguing there’s no reason the cash-strapped state should dole out money when the president has proven himself a more-than-capable fundraiser.

    “When we’re sitting at $7 billion of unpaid bills, why are we dangling $100 million to the decision-makers to entice them to come to Chicago?” House Minority Leader Jim Durkin, R-Western Springs, told the Sun-Times editorial board Tuesday.

    Durkin and Senate Minority Leader Christine Radogno, R-Lemont, took turns railing against the proposal, which House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, muscled through a House committee last week while the Legislature was on spring break.
Good point. Every other presidential library has been funded by private donations - it's actually written into Federal statute. We've gotten mailings from foundations for the past few presidents soliciting funds to house these museums. But now Illinois, a state that can't seem to pay its bills and with outstanding pension obligations approaching a hundred-billion dollars, pulling $100 million out of their ass seems possible.

And Madigan was in full dictator mode last week:
  • No Republicans attended the hearing and the committee was not supposed to have voted on the financing measure, which was not requested by the Barack Obama Presidential Foundation. Backlash over the vote has prompted Madigan to call for a re-vote by the committee.
The REpublicans are outnumbered on the committee, so why even bother having them around to cast dissenting votes against the Obamessiah? You know who Madigan blamed right away for his being caught falisfying voting records, right?
  • Illinois House Speaker Mike Madigan says the Tea Party is forcing him to call for a re-vote on a bill to spend $100 million in taxpayer money to sweeten Chicago's bid for the Obama presidential library.

    Last week while on break between hearings, Democrats on the House Executive Committee voted to pass the measure while their Republican colleagues were not present. They then recorded the vote as "unanimous."
Those damn Tea Party folks. Actually expecting their votes to count when they weren't even in the room - when there wasn't even a quorum for the committee (which was officially in recess) to conduct business. Where do these people think they are, America?


Another Transfer Order?

So now there's an amended transfer order with all sorts of names that weren't on the original delayed order?

Just in how bad a shape did Ladner leave that place?

Is anyone running these seniority dates and movement codes to see what the Department is trying to hide?


Spend Spend Spend

  • Chicago Public Schools put a $100 million price tag Tuesday on Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s sudden mandate to air-condition classrooms in 206 schools, even as CPS faces a $1 billion shortfall and many other pressing capital needs.

    Joel Hood, CPS spokesman, said Tuesday the district estimates spending $20 million per year out of the capital budget over five years to fulfill the mayor’s order to cool classrooms with window units.

    He did not yet know which schools would be first in line, or how they’d been chosen.
They'll be chosen on the basis of their political viability for starters. After that, who knows. Some of these buildings have been without AC for decades, but by golly, if Rahm wants to burn through another $100 million, he just declares it to be so and damn the CPS billion dollar shortfall.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

More Platitudes

  • Emanuel acknowledged the warm weather played a role in the spike in shootings as more people spent time outside over the weekend. But he said there are many things Chicagoans can do to counteract the violence.

    "Every child deserves a childhood, regardless of where they live. But to do that, our city and community, the neighborhoods that make up this city, cannot live by a code of silence," Emanuel said at a news conference at an Edgewater school to announce more international baccalaureate programs. "They have to live by a moral code."

    "Now I've read some of this, and I just want to say this, when some people go 'Well, it's the weather.' It's whether you have values," the mayor said. "Yes, weather's an impact. Where you put police is an impact. Whether you have summer jobs, after school programs, camps, summer reading programs. We have to do that and more."

    Emanuel said he spoke to the parents of five children who were shot over the weekend, as is his custom, calling it the most difficult part of his job. "I want them to know that I love them, I care for them and their city cares for them, and we will be there as many tomorrows as it takes," he said.
There's a guy running for reelection folks (and people). You can barely keep all the useless platitudes in check there.


Another Federal Task Force?

  • When U.S. Attorney Zachary Fardon took his post six months ago amid pressure to curtail Chicago‘s relentless street violence, he was clear that federal authorities were not going to be able to swoop in and make arrests that would suddenly solve the intractable problem.

    While Fardon has downplayed expectations, the announcement Monday that he has created a new Violent Crimes section at the U.S. Attorney’s Office clearly reflects how gun violence has become a high-profile issue for an office better known for combating terrorism and public corruption.

    After months of consultations on how his office spends its resources, Fardon decided to spin off 16 prosecutors from the larger Narcotics and Gangs section to focus solely on how best to use federal statutes to go after violence, said Randall Samborn, a spokesman for Fardon.
Once again, ignore the outcry from certain constituencies and start handing out federal sentences, ten years at a time and far away from home. If you can put a copper in prison for 4 years over a slap, why not send away a convicted gang banger who lit up a park or a street corner for ten years?

Two words Zach - Project Exile. Look it up and what it did to Virginia gun crime rates. Word got around damn quick on the east coast AND it was supported by the NRA of all groups. Of course, it was immediately branded as "racist" by anti-prison groups, the Black Congressional Caucus and others who said it would adversely impact the minority communities, the very communities bleeding into the streets and being devastated by gun violence. That alone ought to tell you it worked wonders.


Rahm to Stop Using Dead Kids as Props

  • Mayor Emanuel gathered Monday with parents and others at Saint Sabina Catholic Church, calling for an end to Chicago’s violence.

    Father Michael Pfleger says another violent weekend does not mean a deadly summer.

    “It’s up to us what happens tonight, tomorrow and up to next weekend,” he said.

    Emanuel says speaking to the parents of murdered children is the toughest part of his job.

    “I am done making these phone calls,” he said. “I have no words to say anymore. There is nothing out there that is more powerful than what’s in here.”
Finaly the taxpayers will be saving money on Rahm's cell bill, although we have to ask, has he looked into a "Friends, Family and Victims Plan" for his phone contract?


84 Recruits Graduate


Now do the division:
  • 84 PPO's divided by 22 Districts divided by 3 watches.
Plus, once they finish their 12 weeks of field training, they're all getting shipped off to Operation Impact for foot patrol, so the actual net effect on District shortages will

84 is better than 0, but not for a while. Let's not pretend that this is any sort of answer in the short term - you know, like Rahm and McCarthy do.


Coppers Injured

  • A woman attempted to flee the scene after crashing into a police car in Calumet Heights Sunday night, police said

    Around 10:45 p.m. Sunday, a police SUV responding to an emergency call was driving northbound on South Jeffery Boulevard when it was struck by a silver sedan heading westbound on 89th Street. The crash forced forced the police SUV into another SUV and caused the police vehicle to flip over

Non-life-threatening injures, but enough to rattle you around pretty good. Best wishes to the injured.


Monday, April 21, 2014

A Good Point

As more time passes, the recent incident at the Skokie courthouse generates some questions in the comment section:
  • SCC: The defense attorney approached the ASA and asked for a deal, saying he has video that doesn't match the report. ASA refused. Now, why would the ASA not view and or prep these Officers with a video she knows exists? and why did she need 5 Officers to testify to a traffic stop (for only a pound of weed)? I'm skeptical about this ASA's actions (subornation of perjury if knew false testimony was being presented? knows they leaving for defense work and wants to F*#@ some coppers?) What is the ASA's story?
Indeed. Five coppers for a traffic stop case - subpoenaed by whom?

The State? Then the State has a responsibility to review the evidence at hand (video, case reports) and prep the officers. It's probably safe to assume this wasn't done at all.

The Defense? Then the Officers better be up to date on everything written or recorded previously, and the State still has to prep them so as to not be surprised by anything that might come up. Five officers subpoenaed by the Defense ought to be a clear indication that something is up on that side of the courtroom.

And what ASA would even think about letting this case go forward after the second Officer testified to pretty much what had to be the exact same questions by Defense Counsel. We don't have a law degree, but two similar sets of questions asked of different officers would kind of point a pretty bright spotlight at what the Defense is planning. Ask for a recess on any pretext and get someone to review the tapes - you've got them there - the State had to turn them over to the Defense as part of discovery.

If the ASA was incompetent, they ought to be fired.

If the ASA knew and let it go forward, they ought to be sanctioned for subornation of perjury, disbarred, and then fired.

This doesn't excuse the Officers by any stretch of the imagination - they screwed the pooch in a way that no cop should sanction, excuse or be a part of. But the ASA has a few questions that need answering from their end, too.


Violent Weekend (UPDATE)

  • Easter weekend was no holiday from violence, with shootings claiming the lives of seven across Chicago and leaving 27 wounded.

    That includes a Sunday afternoon shooting that left one man dead and critically injured another in South Lawndale.

    About 1 p.m., an orange Hummer blocked a Lincoln Navigator head-on at the corner of 28th Street and Sawyer Avenue, Chicago Police at the scene said. Two people with guns then stepped out of the Hummer and fired nearly a dozen bullets at the Navigator, right under a police “blue light” camera.
"...right under a ... camera" - thank goodness it was there to prevent crime, right? The wounded individual in that case has since died, raising the total to 8. And the death investigation of the infant up north might drive it to 9. The wounded are up to 28 at the moment.

Among the dead was a CPD Officer murdered by her husband, a Cook County Officer, who then killed himself. Deepest sympathies to the family.

UPDATE: Almost 40 shot according to the papers, so there goes Garry's "reduction over last weekend" press conference. The five kids wounded in the late night shooting made the difference. Is there a "countdown clock" anywhere?

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Shooting Map

A much more even distribution of shootings and killings this weekend.

At least McCarthy's wish last week that "no one will rest until everyone in Chicago enjoys the same sense of safety" is coming true - every neighborhood is slowly become equally miserable.




Didn't they streamline this entire procedure about three or four years ago?
  • Police shooting in 025 last night involving the destruction of a dog. Now normally this is a pretty simple procedure pertaining to a missle X, TRR as long as there's nothing else hit.

    UNLESS of course you're wearing a gold star,cue the dark side theme from Star Wars,and in steps Deputy Velez with his driver cronie.

    Now according to our fearless leader he states that this is no longer a misc x card and requires a case report for non criminal damage to property. When the general order is brought to his attention,he states"oh well that changed after the SGT's Test. Well many attempts of finding this new called Special order,I'm guessing it's under the title This Shit Doesn't Exist file, he begins berating the officers on scene for removing the animal from the presence of the public (let's face it how long has it taken in the past for streets to pick up a dead animal in the past) and not putting up crime scene tape......I didn't realize that a dead dog required the crime lab. He than orders a p.o. to take the dog out of the bag and search it's body for the 3 bullet wounds.

    [...] No matter what kind of sense was trying to be relayed of this situation he wasn't having any of this. He even went as far to tell the W.C. I'm the acting superintendent, i know what's going on. He further states that this is new practice as the city has faced numerous lawsuits from dog owners. Well news flash Einstien regardless of how this incident is documented it's not gonna stop some shitbag lawyer from suing....Go back behind the desk and worry about beat tags and take the cronie yes man with you.

    what should of been done in 40 minutes took hours of wasted manpower. Now excuse me as I contact the dog whisperer to get dead FIDO's side of the story and contact the Loevy's to get this inevitable lawsuit going.....The real reason to even bring up this nonsense is so people have an idea on how clueless some of the leadership is. God forbid the day when an incident of epic proportions happens and we have to look to bosses like this for leadership and p.s. he also originally stated that the P.O. was the victim for said property which was destroyed.
The people running this asylum.


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Giant Walking Puppets - Preview

We found a proposal on-line about Rahm's efforts to bring the Royal de Luxe Theater Company here to Chicago along with their 50-foot-high street theater puppets. Remember, this is a deal worth millions according to the Sun Times:

That appears to be Rahm on the lead float distributing TIF funds.


5 Dead, 16 Wounded

  • Five people have been killed and 16 others wounded in shootings across the city since Friday evening, including a double homicide with two teenage victims on the South Side.

    An 18-year-old and Jordan Means, 16, who lived less than a block away, were both pronounced dead at the scene.

    The police discovered their bodies just after 10:30 a.m. Saturday inside an apartment in the 8200 block of South Houston Avenue.
  • Two Chicago teenagers were shot to death Saturday over a dispute on Facebook, the mother of one of the victims said Saturday night.
A prominent local news anchor was heard to comment:

And the weekend isn't over yet - even warmer tomorrow.


Happy Easter

You just know that McCarthy is hoping against hope that the dead will actually rise today and save him a few homicides.

Jesus kind of invented CompStat you know, and Lazarus was Jesus's first attempt at manipulating the numbers.

Here's an Easter Jib-Jab to start the morning.


Saturday, April 19, 2014

Bike the Ghetto

  • The Chicago Police Department is deploying bikes for use by patrol officers in 19 of 20 targeted zones that have had a history of high rates of violence, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Police Supt. Garry McCarthy announced Friday.

    Roughly a third of the 360 foot patrol officers assigned to the police’s Operation Impact program, which targets high-violence neighborhoods, have been trained and equipped with bikes, officials said. Some 140 officers will participate in the bike patrol.

    The bikes are being deployed in zones on the South and West sides.
Where are they going to mount the PDT's? Can we at least shift them all to their own radio zone so they can run names in peace?


Once a Thief

  • Smooth-talking felon John Thomas once said the thing he loved about Chicago was, it was “the most forgiving” place for a convicted crook.

    He’d better hope so.

    The 51-year-old real estate developer — who got a second chance at life and dodged a prison term by wearing a wire against disgraced political fundraiser Tony Rezko as well as former Ald. Ike Carothers — has been up to his old tricks, federal prosecutors say.
And his list of connections is impressive:
  • Thomas’s landlord Raghu Nayak — the convicted healthcare fraudster and political fundraiser who allegedly offered former Gov. Rod Blagojevich a $1.5 million bribe to appoint Jesse Jackson Jr. to the Senate — allegedly got $8,250 in rent he was owed, disguised as payment for “plumbing work” at the marina that he never did.

    And Regina Evans — the former Country Club Hills Police Chief, convicted of state grant fraud and linked to several other scams — and her husband both got jobs at the marina, sources say.
Yeah, that guy, still out and still scamming. How does the old saying go - "You can't cheat an honest man"? He must not have run into many of those around here because he's had no trouble talking his way into one thing or another for over a decade.


Giant Walking Puppets

No, not the City Council - these are imported!
  • Chicago has come up with a really big idea to boost tourism: giant puppets roaming the city's streets for days in an elaborate theatrical presentation. 

    A multimillion-dollar deal is in the works to make Chicago the stage for Royal de Luxe, a French street theater company featuring marionettes as tall as 50 feet, during the summer of 2016, according to sources.  

    Chicago would be the first foray into the U.S. for Royal de Luxe, and officials confirmed Friday that talks are underway to bring the giant puppets to town.
We suppose part of the allure is that while you watch the show, Rahm will come by and pick tourists' pockets. Seriously, where do they come up with this crap?


Friday, April 18, 2014

Here Comes the Warm

We imagine one guy in particular isn't going to be sleeping much this weekend:
  • Friday - 54 degrees
  • Saturday - 62 degrees
  • Sunday - 71 degrees
And a whole mess of mid-to-high 60's after that.

We suppose that if we can keep it down to 30 shootings,  McCompStat will claim a 17% reduction in shootings over the same time period from last week - and the media will print it.

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That Was Quick

These bottom-feeders are "sure-thing" operators - they don't lose often at all:
  • A federal lawsuit on Thursday accused five police officers from Chicago and Glenview of conspiring to lie under oath at a court hearing late last month, only to be caught by a judge after a video taken from a squad car contradicted their testimony.

    One of the Chicago narcotics officers had asked the two Glenview officers to turn off their video cameras so the traffic stop would not be recorded, but one of the officers failed to do so, according to the lawsuit.

    The lawsuit alleged that the incident – first reported in the Tribune on Tuesday -- exposed a broader “policy and practice” by Chicago police “to pursue wrongful convictions in drug cases through untruthful testimony.”

    “The biggest casualty in the war on drugs is the truth,” attorney Jon Loevy told reporters at a press conference at his Near West Side office.
Not good....and not getting better.


Another $100 Million?

For a library that doesn't exist yet, hasn't even been awarded as a construction project:
  • An Illinois state House panel on Thursday advanced a plan championed by Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan, D-Chicago, to appropriate $100 million in state funds to help finance the construction of President Barack Obama’s presidential library and museum in Chicago.

    The panel voted unanimously after a hearing in Chicago where rival institutions angling for the facility all agreed it should be in the city; just where is the point of disagreement.

    The measure now advances to the floor of the state House. Madigan spokesman Steve Brown said “there is no firm plan to advance this bill immediately.”

    While there have been some objections over the cash-strapped state of Illinois putting money toward an Obama library since Madigan announced his $100 million plan, no one testified against the state spending.
A state billions of dollars in debt and full of morons who can't wait to deify a president who, quite frankly, hasn't done much for Illinois in particular and Chicago specifically.


Thursday, April 17, 2014

Nice Catch Officers

  • Seven people, including two firefighters and a police officer, were hurt Tuesday evening in a fire in the West Pullman neighborhood on the Far South Side.

    Emergency crews responded about 6:10 p.m. to the two-story frame building in the 11600 block of South Michigan Avenue, according to Larry Langford, a Chicago Fire Department spokesman.

    Two police officers were in the area about 6 p.m., when they saw people trapped on the second floor of the building, said Officer Hector Alfaro, a police spokesman. The officers told a 15-year-old boy and an 8-year-old boy to break a window and jump down into their arms.
  • The smoke was too strong for them to get inside the house, but the two Chicago police officers heard children screaming for help from the top floor.

    “At that time, it was just, ‘We've got to figure out something to do to get the kids,'” said Officer Kevin Tate, who spotted the fire while on patrol Tuesday evening on the Far South Side and sped to the scene with his partner, Officer Samanthia Smith.

    With the help of a couple of neighbors, Smith and Tate coaxed the 8- and 15-year-old boys to jump from a second-story window and into their arms.
A speedy recovery to all involved. Nice job Officers.


Joravsky Adds it Up

From what we read, Rahm has over $1.7 Billion-with-a-B sitting in TIF funds that he uses to "reward" those who donate to him politically. That's enough for TWO pension balloon payments - and the FOP better make every effort to make sure that's EXACTLY where the money goes:
  • As we all prepare for Mayor Rahm Emanuel's proposed property tax hike to pay off billions of dollars in pension obligations, I thought I'd take a trip down memory lane to a not-so-distant era when our leaders acted like we didn't have a care in the world.

    The year was 2004—and what a glorious time it was!
"Glorious" if you were in with Shortshanks.
  • ...the city spent more than $250 million to build a[n underground train station at Block 37 at Randolph and State] will probably never use. 
  • ...Millennium Park ... cost about $280 million in tax increment financing money
  • ...hotel-motel [tax] money ... in 2001 Mayor Daley had earmarked $360 million ... to rebuild Soldier Field
  • ... $57.8 million in an arbitration award for violating the LLC Parking Garage agreement
  • The Daley administration then spent about $22 million to buy space in a Streeterville skyscraper for the Park District's central office
  • TIF subsidies Mayor Daley doled out during those glory years to the likes of MillerCoors, Grossinger Auto, and United Airlines, to name but a few.  
  • Then, in 2008, the final year the Central Loop TIF district was operating, Daley went on one last binge, spending about $365 million.
Joravsky notes, "Man, it would be nice to have that money right about now for those pension obligations." but also notes that Rahm's recent expenditures for a Marriott Hotel and DePaul stadiummay rival the Block 37 debacle in short order.

Joravsky also takes apart Rahm's TIF "reform" efforts in a separate article. Rahm isn't broke. Chicago isn't broke. The system of checks-and-balances might be broken along with the oversight of taxpayer money. Keep this in mind if some half-assed agreement comes down the pike.


    TIF Slush Fund Garners Contributions

    Another in a recent series of articles that points the spotlight at how TIF funds are used to reward connected companies and screw taxpayers out of actual capital projects - and pension funding:
    • [...] Chicago is facing a pension shortfall for its police officers, firefighters, teachers and other municipal workers. If you've followed this story, you've probably heard that the only way Mayor Rahm Emanuel can deal with the situation is to slash those workers' pensions and to jack up property taxes on those who aren't politically connected enough to have secured themselves special exemptions.

      This same fantastical story, portraying public employees as the primary cause of budget crises, is being told across the country. Yet, in many cases, we're only being told half the tale. We aren't told that the pension shortfalls in many locales were created because local governments did not make their required pension contributions over many years. And perhaps even more shocking, we aren't told that while states and cities pretend they have no money to deal with public sector pensions, many are paying giant taxpayer subsidies to corporations -- subsidies that are often far larger than the pension shortfalls.
    Go read it all. It's like the alternative media finally discovered they have an investigative set of balls.

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    Casino Meeting - City Missing

    Rahm is bound and determined to gut the pensions and raise property taxes instead of even considering a casino that might actually assist in solving the problem:
    • They said it could be “the largest casino in the world.”

      A “jewel” in Chicago’s skyline.

      Or an idea whose “day was yesterday.”

      Tourism boosters, corruption fighters, religious leaders and gaming lobbyists all had their say Wednesday on a proposal for a massive state-owned Chicago casino that could dwarf all others in Illinois. State lawmakers listened to their testimony during a day-long hearing held conveniently across the street from City Hall.

      But Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s staff skipped the hearing — where City Hall loomed through a sixth-floor window in the Michael A. Bilandic Building — and instead told the Chicago Sun-Times “the mayor does not believe it is appropriate to talk about gaming until we have addressed pension reform.”
    God forbid actually tapping a new revenue stream from out-of-towners, tourists and conventioneers that could alleviate the mess Rahm inherited but seems determined to exploit to the detriment of anyone who isn't a connected construction firm or connected casino investor. This is the asshole we're supposed to be "negotiating" with.


    Gee, Ya Think?

    • Smoking marijuana even just a few times a week may change your brain, according to a study co-authored by a Northwestern University professor.

      The study, published Wednesday in the Journal of Neuroscience, reported that young adults who use marijuana on a casual basis show significant structural changes in key regions of the brain affecting emotion and decision-making.

      “These are brain regions you don’t want to mess with — period,” said Dr. Hans Breiter, a co-author of the study. Breiter is a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine.

    And just what parts of the brain are affected?
    • In the marijuana subjects, the parts of the brain that regulate emotion (the amygdala) and influence decision-making (the nucleus accumbens) were “grossly rewired,” according to Breiter, who’s also a psychiatrist at Northwestern Memorial Hospital..

      “Even casual use of marijuana can change the brain circuits that change the way you feel and change the way you make decisions, “ said Dr. T. Celeste Napier, professor in the pharmacology and psychiatry departments and director of the Center for Compulsive Behavior and Addiction at Rush University Medical Center.
    And the scientists are just discovering this now? How about asking any copper on the street how weed effects those we see smoking it day in and day out? Short circuiting behavioral and decision making processes - golly!

    It sure would have been nice to have this study released as states move toward legalizing marijuana.

    Oh, and when someone tells you, "the science is settled" regarding anything like marijuana or the origins of the universe or even, say, climate science, point to this study after someone "in the know" says weed is no more dangerous than alcohol.


    Wednesday, April 16, 2014

    Rule 14 - On Tape and Under Oath

    • The dramatic revelation that five officers had allegedly lied on the witness stand in a Skokie drug case, has called into question dozens of other cases which the officers have pending.

      The Cook County State's Attorney's office will only say it is reviewing the matter, but privately, authorities are clearly concerned about a case which fell apart, when the officers were confronted with a video which contradicted their sworn testimony.

      That moment came two weeks ago, when the officers, three from Chicago and two from Glenview, testified in the case of a drug suspect named Joseph Sperling.

      "All five officers were telling the same story word for word," said defense lawyer Steven Goldman. "They were caught in a lie."

      The officers testified that they pulled Sperling over under the pretense of a traffic stop, asked for his license and insurance, allowed him to exit his vehicle and walk to the rear, then removed a duffel bag containing marijuana. Only then, they said, did they arrest and cuff him.

      But Goldman confronted the fifth officer with the squad car video, which clearly showed the officers approaching Sperling's car and immediately taking him out of the car and putting him in handcuffs. Only then did they begin searching, finding the bag in the back seat.
    This was something out of a television show - a genuine "GOTCHA!" moment that defense lawyers usually only dream about. But they got it in this case, hands down. We have a hard time believing the prosecutors didn't have some sort of heads-up once the defense subpoenaed the Glenview in-car-cameras. That should have been a clue that something was up. Espeically in this age of cameras everywhere - traffic, red light, cell phones, squad cars, body cameras, Google-Glass, etc. And if they did have a heads-up, why didn't it come up in prep?

    Regardless, this one is going to reverberate for years. A Rule 14 violation is a bitch. Every single case that these coppers are involved in - as arresting officers, assisting officers, affiants on search warrants, inventory officers - is now in question. Every single piece of paper with their name on it can become suspect, even an innocuous To-From as a witness to a CR. And the sergeant involved? Defense attorneys are going to bury the city in a blizzard of paper for everything with his name on it - even such mundane things as Supervisor Logs that might show a car is supposedly logged at a certain location calls into question entire investigations.

    In the most extreme cases, a sustained Rule 14 means a minimum of 7 years not even being able to sign a simple case report, a traffic violation, or a parking ticket - your word is no good under oath and the City isn't about to put you on the stand for anything. They'll dismiss or settle in an instant. Charlie Williams wanted to fire everyone with a sustained Rule 14 on their record around ten years ago - he said it was around 150-to-200 coppers and he was seriously pursuing it until told to stop by certain connected persons.

    This is going to be ugly.

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    Wow, Just Wow

    Vanecko got out of jail this week. But we didn't see any media coverage on this - maybe we missed it:
    • The Illinois Supreme Court has appointed criminal defense attorney Marc William Martin to an 11th Subcircuit vacancy created by the appointment of Judge Carol A. Kelly.

      Martin's appointment is effective May 1 and terminates on December 5, 2016.

      Martin has been an attorney in Illinois since 1987. Martin was most recently in the news as one of the attorneys for Richard Vanecko, a nephew of former Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley, accused of involuntary manslaughter in the death of David Koschman.
    How very....unexpected? Surprising?



    Exempt Moves?

    Someone said they move some people around?

    Garry getting all his pieces on the board before summer evidently.

    Any dumps? Or did everyone move up again? Funny thing about that - we remember more than a few dumps under Weis, but not so much under this guy.

    It's almost like he isn't really running the Department.


    The Paradox

    Once again, the most observant readers:
    • The FBI says "You cant arrest your way out of the crime problem" and McCarty says "We need tougher guns laws to lock up the bad guys." Our leaders don't have a clue on how to fight crime. 
    We'll drink to that.


    By His Own Words

    In regard to the latest Missing File scandal:
    • Chief Tracy said...More than one occurrence is a pattern, right Garry?
    Well, that is what he (and McJerseyShore) says at CompStat whenever the number crunchers find two robberies in a half-mile radius and they rip the shit out of some tongue-tied gold star, isn't it? Not that we feel for the exempt - they know what they signed up for and they get paid to eat shit. But it's funny how that comes around, isn't it?


    Tuesday, April 15, 2014

    More Missing Files?

    Where there's smoke, there's fire....and something is burning fierce:
    • A police lieutenant at the heart of the missing-files mystery in the David Koschman case was involved in another death investigation in which police records went missing.

      The Chicago Police Department’s Internal Affairs Division questioned Lt. Denis P. Walsh last year about missing documents in the death of Jason Stangeland — two years after IAD interviewed Walsh about the missing Koschman files, according to records and sources.

    • Walsh is among nine officers who were involved in both the Koschman and Stangeland cases, records show.
    Nine coincidences? Who's yanking our legs on this one?


    It certainly seems that there was a concerted effort on the part of a core group of people to manipulate and who knows what else deaths in the entertainment district. We don't see a political angle on this like the Vanecko case, but once again, a bar altercation resulting in a delayed death and files gone missing. Chicagoans are entitled to ask, "What the fuck?"

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    Never Fear! The Feebs Are Here!

    • Chicago’s “ingrained” gang culture is to blame for homicide rates far higher than other large U.S. cities, FBI Director James B. Comey said Monday.

      Speaking a day after one of the city’s warmest and bloodiest weekends so far this year, Comey said gang values went back decades in Chicago, but he warned “you can’t arrest your way to a healthier neighborhood.”
    We'd like to see them try though - one of the problems is Illinois gives day-for-day credit in prison. 6-to-10 becomes 3-to-5 with startling regularity. That needs to end. Another is the inordinately amount of time from arrest-to-trial-to-imprisonment. What good is 10 years downstate if it's already going to be 5 and the first 2.5 are served in Cook Conty jail waiting? There's no "rehabilitation," all the old crew is in there with you, all the old contacts and influences. These are local problems, not really on the FBI radar and certainly not addressable by them.

    The Director did make this observation:
    • Asked why Chicago has failed to cut homicide levels as successfully as New York and Los Angeles, Comey told reporters,“Chicago has a larger and more ingrained and sophisticated street gang structure than many American cities.”

      [...] “They’re old, they’re embedded in a part of the culture in this city, and it’s an enormous challenge,” Comey said.
    "embedded"? In many cases, since the early 1900's in fact, the gangs are part and parcel of the political structure - and this is something that the FBI can and should address. Political corruption on a massive scale in Chicago, comparable only to New Orleans and parts of New Jersey. The gangs own numerous aldercreatures, even today. And in other cases, the aldercreatures obtain tax-breaks for Outfit chop-shops. Those are things that the FBI ought to be looking at to break the cycle of corruption. That's where they can make a difference.


    This Kind of Sums it Up

    From a reader:
    • Try N. Tofigure-Itout said...

      So, when we have a "good" weekend with low shot/kill #s, it's because of his ingenious and innovative strategies.

      When we have the more common "bad" weekends with high shot/killed #s, it's the law's fault.

      Hmm. Weren't the laws the same during the "good" weekends?


    Monday, April 14, 2014

    Blame the Gun Laws?

    • At least 36 people have been shot, four of them killed, and one person was stabbed in Chicago violence since Friday, officials said.

      The most recent weekend homicide took place around 2:40 a.m. Sunday when a 32-year-old man was fatally shot in the chest.
    But the tragi-comical part was this quote from our fearless leader:
    • In a statement, Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said: "While Chicago continues to see reductions in crime and violence, there's obviously much more work to be done and we continue to be challenged by lax state and federal gun laws. Through our police strategies, the City's strengthened investments in youth violence prevention, and a close partnership with residents and community leaders, no one will rest until everyone in Chicago enjoys the same sense of safety."
    Well Gar, your "reductions in crime" have been shown to be statistical manipulation of the highest order.

    Your "police strategies" of doing-more-with-less has led to overtime bills that dwarf any in previous Chicago history as the Department has to spend more on less coverage.

    Your blaming gun laws is pathetic as crime rates drop everywhere except Chicago in relation to increased gun ownership, though we hope Chicago will be catching up with that trend as Concealed Carry takes hold and gun ownership grows.

    And your hope that "everyone...enjoys the same sense of safety" seems to mean that everyone experiences the despair and terror of the ghetto as wilding explodes across the business districts, drug dealing moves to all the outlying neighborhoods, and burglaries, thefts and robberies abound in areas stripped of police protection.

    Congratulations - you and Rahm managed to do less with less and at a greater cost than ever before.

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    I'm Tax Exempt

    • Nahshon Shelton didn’t want to pay the 22-cent tax on his $1.79 two-liter of Pepsi on Saturday afternoon, Chicago Police said.

      So he allegedly pulled a blue-steel Intratec .22-caliber submachine gun out of his Gucci satchel inside the convenience store in the 4000 block of West Madison Street where they tried to make him pay it — and he threatened to kill everyone there, a prosecutor said.

      This “is my neighborhood, I’m tax exempt!” he would later allegedly tell the cops. “Man, you know what, I’ll keep it real. I had to put them in their place.”
    Because gangsters always carry their heaters in Gucci satchels. How much do you think he paid in taxes on the Gucci?

    He did get one thing right in a manner of speaking though - he's definitely a tax drain. We doubt he's paid anything near what he's managed to drain in his 36-year existence.


    Smart Phones and Meters

    Anyone downtown know anything about this? Sounds like something cops should know, not just in the classier parts of town either:
    • For all you beat cops that like to check the meters in 001 and 018 and everywhere else get ready,

      The pay by phone program goes live next week.

      Supposedly there is an app on the city issued smartphones you will be required to use before you can just issue a ticket for Expired Meter.
    Here's the app site - we can't imagine citizens leaving their phones on the dashboard with the meter info - they'd bake in the summer sun - or disappear. We haven't heard anything about "city issued smartphones" though - can such a thing exist?  We scanned the Expired site but didn't see anything last night.Sounds interesting to say the least, but how to pull it off?


    Homicide Quilt

    • Lindsay Evans’ eyes gravitated to the lower end of the 4-foot-by-6-foot piece of fabric, where the names were so abundant in some neighborhoods that they were stitched on top of each other in a barely legible confluence of Chicago’s violence.

      “You can see the hurt and confusion in it,” said Evans, 26, a graphic-design student from Philadelphia.

      Hers is the desired reaction for the group of artists who created “Untitled (Homicide Quilt),” a quilted map of Chicago with the names of each of the city’s homicide victims from last year stitched into the neighborhood where a life ended.
    Is it wrong for us to hear tomorrows weather report of rain mixed with snow and a 40 degree temperature drop and think to ourselves, "Damn, that quilt looks warm - it'd be nice to sleep under that tonight." And the fact that most of the names on that quilt are currently enjoying the balmy confines of Hell just make it feel all the warmer.


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