Sunday, December 31, 2006

What the Hell Was This?

Can you say "ass whupping?" We knew you could.

And this is supposed to do what for the Bears during a playoff run?

SCC Predictions

Well, the readers have had their say. Now we'll inflict our views upon the readers. Granted, quite a few might be similar to those posted previously, but we never claimed to be the only psychics around.
  • Politics - Local - a few more routine indictments, convictions or guilty pleas from City Hall. Fitzpatrick has landed his punches there. Look for a boatload of headlines concerning County government though. The Feds took truckloads of records out of the County Building in 2006 and no one has seen hide or hair of them since - the accountants must be busy.
  • Politics - State - Ryan retrial? Probably. We'll also bet they screen potential jurors a lot more closely this time. How about a few Blago scandals? They're out there and they're brewing.
  • Politics - National and International - Someone is going to bomb Iran. The only question is whether it's the US or the Israelis. If it doesn't happen in 07, it's happening in 08. Hillary and Obama will announce runs for the nomination. Both will fall behind to someone else. The Republican nomination is as murky as the Dems. Just for laughs, we'll predict someone will finally prove bin Laden is dead. Europe will continue it's slide into irrelevance as more and more muslims force an aging population into new depths of ridiculousness. There will be some sort of coup in North Korea and China will suffer some major internal problems.
  • Sports - everyone in Chicago will suffer disappointment. Da Bears will fall a game short of the Superbowl; the Bulls will suffer a second round playoff defeat; the Blackhawks will lose in the first round of the playoffs; the Sox moves will be nowhere near enough; the Cubs will still suck and outdraw the Sox by thousands.
  • Department - New Superintendent. We'll stick with our Maher prediction of last summer. We'll repeat last year's guess that Starks is leaving this year. Williams will be the new First. SOS will be renamed, but remain intact. Convictions will result in heavy prison time and Administrative firings for this scandal will total more than a dozen. Brennan will remain a useless "hiring monitor" and we'll see a series of exams for small unit spots (Marine, K9, ET, FTO again).
  • General - the economy will keep going despite the democrats control of Congress. This will be a blessing and a curse for Republican hopes in 2008. We'll do another 2 million page views without breaking a sweat and still manage to have fun despite the threats of lawyers and various media types. Seiser will still run it.

Nice Bust

Get your minds out of the gutter you perverts.
  • A routine traffic stop on the Northwest Side led to a big find by Chicago Police: more than 450 pounds of marijuana, authorities said Friday.

    Jeffrey Populorum, 46, was driving a 1999 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck on the 4500 block of West George Street about 6:30 p.m. Thursday when he ran a stop sign, said Grand Central District Sgt. Rich Sliva.

    Officers pulled him over and saw and smelled marijuana in the truck, Sliva said.

Sun Times, Channel 2 and Channel 7 all have coverage of the event. Good job guys.

Saturday, December 30, 2006

Gee Whiz Toddler

This guy can't even hold our interest for a week without doing something stupid. Not even the appearance of trying to run honest government anymore. The arrogance of people who think they're a law unto themselves:
  • Cook County's beleaguered health bureau got a new leader Thursday, when County Board President Todd Stroger appointed his father's personal physician to the post.
  • The Chicago Sun-Times last year identified Simon as the highest-paid Cook County employee living outside the county, making $391,550 and living in Richland, Mich.
Way to go Todd!

Sergeants to Join FOP?

Could this be a good thing?

SecondCitySarge is covering the angles.

Join in here or there - good idea or bad? Since a large number of Sergeants are members of both lodges, there would seem to be quite a bit of dissatisfaction with the PBPA union. Thoughts?

Friday, December 29, 2006

TRR's to OPS?

Um, FOP? Should this be looked at? Why would there be a notice in CO Books citywide that all TRR's are not to pass Go; are not to collect $200 dollars; are to be sent DIRECTLY and ONLY to OPS.

What happened to the R&D copy? The Deputy Chief Copy? Does the District even keep a copy anymore?

Can someone explain this witch hunt going on?

UPDATE: We're reading the comments section and hearing that this is a paper saving move. And that OPS was always on the distribution list anyway. And som people really don't believe any of that. We're looking into it some more - but ONLY sending something to OPS doesn't seem to bode well for anyone involved in any Use of Force issues.

Saddam to be Executed Tonight

  • An adviser to Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki said Saddam would be executed before 6 a.m. Saturday, or 10 p.m. Friday EST. Also to be hanged at that time were Saddam's half-brother Barzan Ibrahim and Awad Hamed al-Bandar, the former chief justice of the Revolutionary Court, the adviser said.
We think maybe more than a few MidEast dictators will be sleeping a little less soundly tonight upon the broadcast of this happy event showing how the people will mete out justice once they get a hold of the reins of government.

Day Off

Going to relax today. Posting will resume this evening.

Thursday, December 28, 2006

Reader Predictions for 2007

We'll provide our predictions on New Year's Eve. In the meantime, we offer you the chance to play Jeanne Dixon, Sybil Trelawney and Carnac the Magnificent all in one go. We'll try the same format as last year:
  • Local, State, National and International politics;
  • Sports prognostications;
  • Department predictions;
  • General guesses.
The Department ones ought to be interesting as we're due for a new Superintendent shortly. And the Local scene should provide some amusement as the Feds continue to indict pols statewide. Have at it.

New Years Plans

Well, this just threw a wrench into everyone's plans:
  • The NFL announced late Monday that the Bears-Green Bay Packers game scheduled for noon Sunday at Soldier Field would be moved to 7:15 p.m. on WMAQ-Ch. 5.
Now we have to be at the bar before heading to the party. And what about all the Gang/Tact, SOS and TRU teams? Are they going to have TV's at the mobilization locations? These are questions that need to be answered!

Wednesday, December 27, 2006

County Problems

  • Organized labor helped get Todd Stroger elected president of the Cook County Board, but now union leaders say they feel betrayed by Stroger's proposal to lay off thousands of their members to balance the county budget.

    "There hasn't been a more loyal group to President Stroger than the labor community," said Dennis Gannon of the Chicago Federation of Labor. "I'm very concerned about this budget being balanced on the backs of hard-working men and women."

    In a challenge to Stroger, the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees -- the biggest union of county workers -- met with him last week and argued that cuts alone aren't enough. The union proposed that the county raise taxes -- something Stroger has said he won't do.

Organized Labor wants Stroger to raise taxes to fix the holes in his budget. We don't recall ever electing AFSCME to do anything for us. Granted, democratic politicians generally acquiesce to union demands for tax increases to pay for overly bloated programs, subsidies and the like. But rarely is it ever so baldly stated in the open media.

And here come the scare tactics that "crime may rise" if these budget cuts take effect:
  • Cook County State's Attorney Richard Devine says there is a risk that crime could go up if the county proceeds with some hefty budget cuts.

    Devine said the 17 percent budget cuts requested by county officials mean hundreds of county prosecutors will have to be laid off.

    As a result, Devine said, more plea bargains are likely to be offered to defendants, and special units of the state's attorney's office that handle such offenses as arson and financial crimes would have to be eliminated.
How would this be different from any other day in the office of the State's Attorney? We are the ONLY County in the nation that has the "Felony Review" system, meaning that County court system is already bloated beyond belief, providing what are essentially payroller jobs to politically connected lawyers and offspring. It takes them hours and hours to respond to calls. And those they do respond to have so many hoops to jump through to get felony charges that it actually discourages victims from pursuing justice.

Budget cuts across the board and no raising taxes? We might have to give the Toddster a nod - if it actually takes effect (we aren't holding our breath though).

What is This All About?

Fights at movie theaters? A number of theaters? And it's completely unrelated?
  • Police in the southern Illinois community of Fairview Heights closed a movie theater last night after a fight broke out and a crowd of about 150 people mobbed the lobby. Police say no one was injured in the incident, but one juvenile was arrested and later released.

    Police did not know what triggered the fight.

    It was one of a rash of fights at movie theaters across the state last night.

    Chicago Police say three fights erupted at city movie theaters within minutes of each other.

    The theaters were on the city's west and southwest sides.

So we have 3 fights IN the city. And another one OUTSIDE the city. And tonight, WGN News was reporting ANOTHER fight in a theater this evening (we can't locate a link at the moment, but it was mentioned on air). Call us silly, but we're betting on some sort of link, no matter how much the Department and the media deny it.

Saddam to Swing?

From the Tribune and Sun Times:
  • Iraq's highest court rejected Saddam Hussein's appeal Tuesday and said the former dictator must be hanged within 30 days for ordering the killing of scores of Shiite Muslims in 1982.
  • An Iraqi appeals court has upheld the death sentence for Saddam Hussein, Iraq's national security adviser said Tuesday.
We're hopeful it's soon. It'd be a nice gesture and one could almost consider it a warning to others - except for the fact that the UN and world community by and large refuse to take any sort of punitive action against rogue nations, which will only cause more harm in the years to come. We, for one, would cheer his demise.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Gerald Ford, RIP

News outlets are reporting the former president has died this evening at the age of 93. We're old enough to have vague memories of Watergate and Ford's taking over following the Nixon resignation. Ford losing to Carter is one of our earlier political memories and it was a topic of discussion over our dinner table for weeks. Our parents didn't like Carter much and the following four years proved their observations correct.

The "accidental President" served with quiet dignity. He will be missed.

Homicides Up

A couple of people were shocked we hadn't commented on this yet. We were actually going to wait until the end of the year and see what the grand totals were. We were also going to sign up for the various "ghoul pools" that circulate this time of year for next years first homicide.
  • The number of homicides so far this year has surpassed last year's total, according to unofficial Chicago Police figures, but overall violent crime is continuing to drop.

    As of Thursday, there were 452 murders in Chicago, up three from last year's total of 449, according to unofficial numbers from the Police Department. The increase reverses a four-year decline.

The bean counter in us wonders aloud if the current manpower shortage is actually some kind of actuarial plot - see how low you can let the officer numbers go on the street before crime starts to rise again. Then hold the line at that number and see if crime remains steady. Then when election cycles come around, you can always up the number of officers the year before to drive crime down, and let retirement attrition lower your numbers to "save" money in off years. It's an interesting theory and might explain recent events.

Just out of curiosity - if the Department is budgeted a certain number of spots - what happens to the money when they don't fill those spots? Can someone enlighten us?

Christmas Posting

Though sporadic, we managed to get a number of posts up over the holiday. Be sure you scroll down over the past 10 posts or so. We cover a number of topics that have come up including the Bears, Obama, newly authorized weapons and the front page article in the Tribune that outlines the outrageous fees paid to remove dead bodies.

As a side note, we are exploring the possibility of opening a competing body removal service that will only charge a base fee of $500 per body (almost a 50% savings for the City!) Additional charges will be levied based on the degree of decomposition. We will be hiring shortly - wagon experience preferred. Submit resumes to our e-mail.

What's Really Going on Here?

Trust the government to run a study for two whole years and decide that it knows just about as little as it did when it started:
  • The FBI failed to fully investigate information suggesting other suspects may have helped Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols with the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing, allowing questions to linger more than a decade after the deadly attack, a congressional inquiry concludes.

    The House International Relations investigative subcommittee will release the findings of its two-year-review as early as Wednesday, declaring there is no conclusive evidence of a foreign connection to the attack but that far too many unanswered questions remain.

    The subcommittee's report will conclude there is no doubt McVeigh and Nichols were the main perpetrators, and it discloses for the first time that Nichols confirmed to House investigators he participated in the robbery of an Arkansas gun dealer that provided the proceeds for the attack.
The FBI is a mediocre police agency at best. Counter Intel? Semi-adequate. Tracking down financial dealings and paper trails? Good job. But actually doing police work? They leave a lot to be desired.

This is one of those times. Just from what we've read on our own or learned about at various training sessions we've attended, the questions the Feebs should have been asking and the clues they should have been following up on never received a proper airing out. And their best witness to the entire event went to the death chamber a mere three months before 9/11. We don't think this makes us some wild eyed conspiracy nutcase, but rather coppers who see a bunch of things that don't seem to add up and who desire a more thorough accounting of everything that happened that day. And this two year investigation doesn't do it.

Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry Christmas

To each and all, a very Merry Christmas from SecondCityCop.

Be careful, be safe, be smart. Enjoy the holiday.

Griese Gets a Shot

Things that make you go "Hmmmm."

The Bears are looking to sweep the Division, we thought we heard for the second year running. Good for them. But why make the switch now, two games before the end of the year? Right before the playoffs? It's going to be an interesting week to see if Griese gets more snaps in practice and maybe a start against Green Bay next week.

ESPN also covers the controversy.


  • A funeral was held Saturday for Willie Posey. Posey was the bodyguard and friend of Chicago Bear Tank Johnson. Many relatives attending the funeral spoke out against guns and violence.
Leaving out the allegations that Posey and maybe other members of the Johnson entourage regularly fired off weapons in the backyard of a densely populated subdivision along with various other alleged offenses. Trust us, we aren't friends of gun grabbers and other measures that disarm law abiding citizens, but Posey lived a life that was less than exemplary and hung with known thugs and gangbangers. You lay down with dogs, you're going to get fleas.

More Obama Problems

If we aren't mistaken, Obama declared a few weeks ago that there never were any favors granted to Tony Rezko. We guess this would be similar to the "suspended" promises made regarding a run for the White House? From the Tribune:
  • Political fundraiser Antoin "Tony" Rezko made a modest pitch to U.S. Sen. Barack Obama last year.
  • Rezko recommended a 20-year-old student from Glenview for one of the coveted summer internships in Obama's Capitol Hill office.
  • The student got the job and spent five weeks in Washington, answering Obama's front office phone and logging constituent mail.
This would seem to qualify as "a favor," wouldn't it? The Sun Times has additional coverage.

Like we said before, this guy's 15 minutes were up 10 minutes ago. There is no way he stands up to the brutal spotlight of a national campaign, not to mention the dirty tricks already being planned by Hillary's people.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Dead Chicagoans Worth Weight in Gold

This is just stupid. And not the good kind of stupid like the various Midway Airport photos we keep getting in the mail. This is the kind of stupid a lot of people should lose their jobs over. Front page of the Sunday Tribune (if you need to log into the Trib website, use the following user name: The password: 123456):
  • Police call them the body snatchers, and their invasion from Ohio began in 2004 when a Dayton company called GSSP Enterprises Inc. won a city contract for the grim but necessary task of hauling thousands of Chicago's dead to the morgue.
  • They recently rewarded the Dayton firm with a new five-year, $15.5 million deal that boosts the rate the city pays by 335 percent--to $915 from $210 for each body transported to the Cook County medical examiner's office from the scenes of murders, accidents, suicides and many natural deaths.
  • That is far more than paid elsewhere in the nation for the same service, experts say. The Cook County Sheriff's Police, for example, pay $130 per body.
Cook County, which is probably the most bloated political structure in the entire universe pays a measly $130 and Daley pays $915 per stiff? Un-freaking-believable. This company from Ohio must think they've put one over on the big city boys. Of course, after they give the required kickbacks to various political entities and minority sub contractors, it'll take quite a bite out of the $915, but as GSSP also moved bodies in Ohio for a mere $85 per, we're sure they'll still have plenty left over.

New Guns! But....

We heard the Department is going to approve a new weapon for the first time in something like 100 years. Well, maybe not 100 years, but damn near. We saw a flyer for these guns in passing, but didn't get a look at the manufacturer or models that will be approved.

It's too much to hope that the Department would go back to a Double-Single configuration, but we've heard they might actually approve a .40 caliber weapon. We're sure one or more of our readers have some insight. Unfortunately, word has probably already leaked out to the various gun shops and they will have already added $150 to the price of the gun. We are also getting word that certain parties are resisting the implementation of a weapon mounted flashlight on a built in tactical rail. The fear is that officers will use the weapon mounted flashlight in place of their regular flashlights.

So let's get this straight - We're the police. We've gone through quite a bit of training. We qualify every year. We're finally getting the option to put an extra 100 rounds though our guns at Department expense for the first time ever. We're expected to make instantaneous life and death decisions at the drop of a hat. And the assumption is that we are going to wave our guns around at traffic stops, field interviews and maybe while pointing out a street sign in the dark to a lost tourist?

Actually, there might be a moron or two who does something like that. But it's overly sad that this Department has to stoop so low as to even consider that this might happen. And to counter act it, they have to kow-tow to a bunch of pencil pushing liability lawyers and mold an entire weapons system to the lowest common denominator.

What do the readers think? Is a built in tactical flashlight going to make you discard your stand alone flashlight, forget elementary gun safety and turn you into a drooling moron? Or is a tactical flashlight merely another tool in a long line of tools that this Department has ignored for decades to the detriment of officer safety and modern policing? (can you see which side of the issue we fall on?)

Democratic Over Reach Again

This would be hilarious if it wasn't so typical of mainstream democratic thinking:
  • U.S. Hispanic groups and activists on Thursday called for a moratorium on workplace raids to round up illegal immigrants, saying they were reminiscent of Nazi crackdowns on Jews in the 1930s.
  • "This unfortunately reminds me of when Hitler began rounding up the Jews for no reason and locking them up," Democratic Party activist Carla Vela said. "Now they're coming for the Latinos, who will they come for next?"
Right. Because the evil Jews were invading Germany by the tens of millions, putting undue strain on the legal system and health care system and driving down the prevailing wage of the day. Is there any depth the democratic party won't sink to in order to completely destroy the very country that guarantees they won't be imprisoned or shot for their insanity?

Thanks to TexasRainmaker for the story.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Once Again, Two Sets of Rules

  • Mayor Richard Daley is under fire for not firing a top city official who admitted to rigging exams to get a job for a son of a top union official.

    A long time friend and political ally of the Daleys is on the job as the Mayor's Deputy Planning Commissioner at $129,000 a year, even though he admittedly broke the law by fixing a hiring exam.

OK. You or we rig a hiring exam or actually get caught cheating, being fired would probably be the least of our problems. We'd be fighting for day labor spots with all the illegals. This guy? Keeps a job paying him $129,000 a year. Oh lord, that we could screw up as badly as this guy. And it only gets better - he's also a cooperating Federal witness.
  • That's despite the fact that Kozicki, testifying with a grant of immunity from the Feds, admitted during the trial of Daley Patronage Chief Robert Sorich that he rigged a hiring exam so Andy Ryan,the unqualified 19-year-old son of a union boss, could get a job as a city building inspector.

    The mayor's advisors claim that he hasn't been fired because the Feds have advised the city not to penalize cooperating witnesses. But he had to be forced to cooperate and given a grant of immunity from the feds to give an honest testimony.

What keeps inspiring people to throw themselves under the bus for this mayor and this political machine? Could someone explain at least THAT part of it to us?

Dyslexic Hit Man?

If this had happened on The Sopranos, everyone would be laughing about it over the water cooler on Monday morning. The fact that there is a dead man out there and a family in mourning makes this stupidity all the more horrifying.
  • A new theory in last month's slaying of a suburban plumbing company owner took shape Friday. It now looks like a mob hit with a tragic twist.
  • The Chicago Crime Commission suspects the hit man went to the wrong house and killed an innocent man.
As one of our commentators pointed out in a previous post, this seems to be the difference in the plumbing contractor living at something like 623 and the previously convicted mobbed up individual living over at 632. And trust the lawyer of the Outfit guy to have a dumb comment:
  • [Lawyer] Alex Salerno said there is no reason anyone would want to kill his client. He added that the botched hit theory is ridiculous. Salerno says he's defended people in a number of murder cases and finds it unlikely that a professional hit man would make such a dumb mistake.
Wow, a lawyer says it's "unlikely." It's also unlikely that a plumbing contractor with no enemies would be shotgunned to death in his own driveway after arguing with a man in a ski mask. The poor guy was probably saying, "Salvatore Cautadello? Who's that?"

Sporadic Christmas Posting

Family, furlough, fun, festivity and frivolity.

We will be posting through Christmas and beyond. No worries there. But due to the large number of holiday obligations, the regularly schedule posting times might be a bit off. We're sure our readers are in the same boat and visit will be sporadic as well - or at least we hope everyone is putting family first over and above this website.

Friday, December 22, 2006

Is This Really a Surprise?

  • An owner of Ice Bar -- the site of the slaying of Chicago Bear Tank Johnson's bodyguard -- once invested in a mob-tied casino and is the daughter of an associate of Outfit boss Joseph "Joey the Clown" Lombardo.

    Bar owner Anna Marie Amato also pleaded guilty to a felony drug possession case in 2005 but under the special probation she received, she did not have a felony conviction entered on her record, allowing her to keep her liquor license, according to court records and a city spokeswoman.

Once again, anyone who thinks this town and this political machine isn't part and parcel of the Outfit is smoking crack. Readers can use this thread to recall all the Mob influences you can tie to the current Administration, it's Departments and even this Department. It's ridiculous people ever get ahead playing by the rules. It happens, but it's rare.

Cops Hurt

Somehow we missed the incident up north where two cops in an unmarked got clocked near Foster and Austin. Any word on those two?

And then Thursday's article on the Channel 2 website about a copper hurt in a high rise fire. We heard that three cops went to get checked out, but only one went by ambulance. Everyone is supposed to be ok though.

Be careful out there.

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Who is this Goof?

From Fox 32. You'll have to click the link and hope your computer can play web videos:
  • A former Chicago policeman has now written a book called: "Brotherhood of Corruption." It details how cops can go bad. Mark Suppelsa has the story you can only see on Fox.
We know this goof's name and book title have appeared on this site before in various comments sections. We can only figure that he's getting a bunch of free publicity because of the recent SOS scandal. Every story we've ever heard about him wasn't complimentary. Go figure.

Anyone Hear About This?

We got a letter today from a copper who works on the west side. Everyone who reads this site knows about the recent news story regarding RAP's and slow response times, allegedly based on a nefarious plot by evil white policemen and politicians to short minority communities of police service.

Of course, it's a load of bullshit.

According to the letter, after a certain Deputy Superintendent put the onus for poor response times on OEMC and dispatchers, the staff at 9-1-1 has been playing everything by the book. This led to a number of hurt feelings so the Deputy Superintendent made an appearance and told the dispatch roll calls that he had been misunderstood and misquoted. It WASN'T the dispatchers fault at all - it was all the fault of the Field Sergeants who couldn't supervise adequately enough.

For our money, we're still sticking with the manpower shortage theory, but what do we know?

We'd love to see the boys and girls over at Chicago Dispatchers or the LetsTalkChiTown blogs let us know what was actually said at this roll call. And we would REALLY like to see what SecondCitySarge has to say about all this. Are Sergeants truly the source of all RAP's and evil within the Department?

Darwinism Strikes Again

Why do people continue to do stupid things like skydive or climb mountains? Hasn't human ingenuity rendered the need to climb mountains pretty much obsolete?
  • Rescue teams gave up any hope of finding two missing climbers alive on stormy Mount Hood and abandoned the frustrating, 9-day-old search Wednesday at the request of the men's families.
  • [Local Sheriff] Wampler said the men's families made the decision to end the search as yet another snowstorm barreled in.
If you are that desperate to do something that could result in your own death, fine. Just don't expect us to pay for your funeral or pay to raise your offspring. But when you needlessly risk the lives of so many people trying to rescue you, you really ought to be stopped. At least someone in the family had brains enough to call this one off. Sheriff Wampler is to be commended for running a very thorough search, but he thinks he failed by not finding these climbers. He ought to be given an award for not losing anyone else during a search for people who just needed to push the boundaries a little too hard. And a little too unnecessarily.

ComEd Rate Hikes

Here it comes! A 20% rate hike. Prepare to take it in the shorts people.
  • Electric bills are going up for Commonwealth Edison customers. The utility got permission Wednesday to raise rates more than 20 percent. That increase takes effect in January. The Illinois Commerce Commission approved the increase Wednesday. Last month, lawmakers in Springfield defeated a proposal to block the increase.
This one is going to hurt. How can the mayor base his re-election campaign on the city being such a wonderful place to live when none of the public servants can actually afford to live here anymore? It's getting ridiculous.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006


Woke up this morning and the phone lines were down around the neighborhood. No internet access all day. Ended up getting repaired sometime after 5 pm and by that time, the day was shot. We'll resume normal posting of comments and such shortly.

Was the Ball Dropped on DNA Test?

Well, it depends on whose article you read. First you have the Channel 7 story:
  • Could a woman's life have been saved if Chicago police and the state police crime lab worked more quickly to match DNA from a murder scene to a suspect? That's one of the questions being asked after we learned it took more than six weeks for a cable repairman's DNA to be analyzed. Late Tuesday afternoon, the chief of detectives said her team believed the best chance for solid evidence would come from a fingerprint left on a shower curtain, not DNA from the victim's body. They thought most of it would have washed away in the soapy bathwater. Detectives ordered a rush on the fingerprint -- not on DNA found on the victim
  • Chicago Police detectives asked the State Police crime lab to put a "rush" on DNA testing in connection with a Hyde Park rape and murder that occurred Oct. 21.
  • But the lab didn't alert investigators until Dec. 12 that usable DNA from the presumed killer was recovered on the victim, 39-year-old Janice Ordidge, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned.
So Channel 7 blames the Lab and CPD. The Sun Times says CPD tried to order up a "rush" on testing. The Sun Times also says that detectives on the case started working other angles as they waited for the State Crime Lab to come up with some sort of results. We'd tend to go with the Sun Times version as they hate the police a little bit less than Channel 7. That's not a ringing endorsement by any means, but it would seem someone dropped the ball on this and we'd (selfishly) prefer it to be the State Crime Lab - we've got a bit too much scandal fatigue going on here.


Illinois politics isn't about being qualified. It's about being related.
  • Surrounded by her congressman husband, her two young children and a throng of sign-waving supporters, Sandi Jackson filed nominating petitions Monday in the race for alderman of the South Side's 7th Ward.

    The campaign turned in close to 5,000 voter signatures, she said, adding that she felt "compelled" to run after watching the recent political maneuvering by new Cook County Board President Todd Stroger and Stroger's mentor, former Ald. William Beavers -- whose daughter, Darcel A. Beavers, was recently appointed to the aldermanic seat Jackson hopes to win.

And the bullshit continues.

Let's Deport Her Already

  • On Friday, the Sun-Times asked readers whether they thought Elvira Arellano's move to avoid deportation by taking sanctuary in a West Side church would have any effect on immigration laws. Here's what you thought:

    Of 665 respondents:

    605 (90%) said "No"

    60 (9%) said "Yes"

Sounds like a clear majority for instant deportation. We'll even volunteer to lead the raid. Who's with us? Her 15 minutes were up about 14 minutes ago.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Sergeant List Out

Someone type it up? We'll post it if we gt it.

The Wrong Lesson Learned

  • City of Chicago officials are preparing to settle a police brutality case that has generated no stories in the mainstream media -- but which watchers in the blogosphere say threatened to expose widespread patterns of abuse in the Chicago Police Department.
  • As Kalven reported on his blog, the numbers show that of the 10,150 complaints of excessive force, illegal arrest, illegal searches, racial and sexual abuse filed against Chicago officers between 2002 and 2004, only 18 times were officers suspended for seven days or more.
  • That means an officer accused of abuse has a 99.8 percent chance of getting off without any "meaningful discipline," Futterman said. The figure exposes as a lie the department's attempts to portray the abuse under former Police Cmdr. Jon Burge as ancient history and practices as having been reformed, Futterman said.
Maybe, just maybe, the Slum-Times should question why over 10,000 complaints were made that had a high probability of being made with malicious intent and were of such a dubious nature that the Office of Professional Standards could not sustain 99.8% of the allegations.

Notice that the lawyers and the media completely disregard and make no mention of the fact that the Sworn Affidavit law has reduced the number of frivolous allegations made by citizens over nonsense to record lows. The high numbers from 2002 through 2004 had everything to do with the culmination of the entire populace of the CHA being trained to whine and complain about every little perceived slight inflicted on them by officers enforcing the law.

Gun Turn In - Update

Some info from someone who really ought to know:
  • The Gun Turn In tally is currently at 2,976. Just short of 3,000. This number is a little misleading, as it includes approximately 150 BB guns that were collected at $10 a piece.
  • Most of the stuff is crap, but there are a few pieces that were excellent. Several WWI and WWII era pieces including 1911s, a P38 (all original), and a couple of WWII era Japanese rifles that were obviously collected on the battlefield and sent home by our fighting men.
  • the guns are being sent to ERPS piecemeal. The current plan is to do some training with the recruits and allow them to do all the inventories, and then send the weapons to ERPS in small batches as they get done with them over the next several months. Apparently ERPS just finished with all the weapons from the last gun turn in (in April) a few weeks ago, and is just not prepared to deal with a single bulk shipment like that again.
  • the City got a deal on the Mastercards they were handing out - apparently they expire in 6 months, rather than the normal year time limit. Wonder how much they saved on that, and where the money went. I guess they forgot to mention that in the press conference.
A couple of points by us:
  • maybe the city ought to look into donating or auctioning off some of the museum pieces? Why melt down a World War II collector's piece worth $12,000 when the mayor needs every dime he can lay his hands on?
  • Where are these things being stored until they're sent to E&RPS? Is E&RPS that short handed like everyone else in the Department seems to be? Everyone except 35th Street that is. And having recruits inventory the guns? Is this before or after they're tested ballistically for links to crime scenes? What kind of legal ramifications would there be with chain-of-custody issues for a turn in tested at the crime lab and then inventoried months later by a recruit?
  • We're betting that almost no one knows about the 6 month limit on those Mastercards. THAT would be an extraordinary bit of info to get out into the media.

Bad Ideas for Pets

From the Sun Times:
  • A 13-foot boa constrictor wrapped itself around its owner's neck and killed the man in his home, authorities said.

    An acquaintance found Ted Dres, 48, inside the snake's cage Saturday and called police, the Hamilton County Sheriff's office said.

    The snake was still strangling Dres when deputies arrived, and the officers had to work with members of an animal protection group to remove the reptile, the sheriff's office said.

Darwin would be proud. Or at least the Darwin Awards people.

Monday, December 18, 2006

"Hundreds" of Guns Collected

Kind of a step backwards from the "thousands" or so collected other times they run this event.
  • Hundreds of firearms, including some deadly assault weapons, were swapped for credit cards Saturday during Chicago's second citywide gun trade-in.
  • Anyone bringing in an assault weapon received a $100-dollar credit card, a $50-dollar card for a rifle or handgun, and $10-dollars for a BB gun or replica gun.
Who's got the final tally? And how many stories have you heard about true collector's pieces being melted down for scrap metal. What a waste.

UPDATE (prior to publication): The Tribune reports over 1,200 guns.

Just Bizarre. Really Bizarre.

  • Rick Lisko hunts deer with a bow but found his most unusual one driving his truck.

    One day last month, Lisko found a young buck with nub antlers -- and seven legs. Lisko said it also had both male and female reproductive organs.

    ''It was definitely a freak of nature,'' Lisko said. ''I guess it's a real rarity.''

    He said he slowed down as the buck and two does ran across his driveway Nov. 22, but the buck ran under the truck and was hit.

    When he looked at the animal, he noticed 3- to 4-inch appendages growing from the rear legs. Later, he found a smaller appendage growing from one of the front legs.

Genetic freaks of nature - and we aren't talking about the general population of cheeseheads. Seven legged deer. And that isn't the worst part:
  • No matter how freaky, the deer was skinned and consumed.

    ''And by the way, I did eat it,'' Lisko said. ''It was tasty."

Truly frightening people, ya hey der.

Home Field Advantage for How Long?

Blowing a 21 point lead in under 12 minutes makes us think someone is finding the weak spots in the Bears defense. And unfortunately, those weak spots aren't going to be filled any time soon, what with the legal problems and injury bug surrounding the Bears.

Coverage at Channel 2, Channel 5 and ESPN.

Sunday, December 17, 2006

What's Up With Harwood Heights?

Getting this story from two different people in recent days:
  • Child of a copper (one person's son, one person's daughter) were driving through Harwood Heights. Both pulled over by a radar car. Both times, they are approached by the cop (both times allegedly a female cop) and told first thing, "I see the FOP stickers and I don't want to hear a word about them." The cop's kid is then given a ticket.
OK. First of all, if the kid was breaking the law, fine. Pull them over. If they're jagoffs, write them. Call dad and mom. But to go out of your way to even deny the kid a chance to explain or make an excuse or whatever courtesy you'd give any other citizen before seeing if they're legit is just wrong. And why is this happening in Harwood Heights? An interesting story has reached our ears.

Remember the bank robbery in Harwood Heights a month or so ago? And the off duty guy from 025 witnessed the robber run out of the bank at Harlem and Lawrence with a gun and exchanged gunfire with the offender before the dye pack exploded? The chase went from Harwood Heights into 016 where the offenders were apprehended. After 016 took them into custody, it is alleged that a female copper from the burbs went into a Chicago Police squad car, removed the prisoner from the car, took off the handcuffs and then put her own cuffs on an offender saying that as it happened in Harwood Heights, it was their arrest.

An argument ensued. In one version we heard, the Commander of 016 showed up and the Commander of Harwood Heights showed up and further arguing went on. The end result was that a blanket CR number was obtained on 016th District officers for being disrespectful toward the suburban cops, especially the female. In another version, it is alleged that the daughter of the Harwood Heights police commander was arrested later that week and long-formed by 016 shortly after this incident and had to spend time in one of our fine lockups.

Who's got the real scoop? If anything, this female from Harwood Heights needs to be straightened out in a big way. An arrest is not based on where the crime occurred but where the subject was apprehended and by whom. And isn't the FBI going to take this piece of garbage off our hands anyway for the bank robbery before we charge him with attempted murder? And if the 016 District Commander didn't back his guys on the scene, there ought to be repercussions. And finally, if Harwood Heights is playing games with our kids and not extending the courtesy they'd extend any other citizen, and are in fact TARGETING people with FOP stickers, it's time to crack down on them a little harder than is being done to us. We need info on this incident.

What the Hell Lovie?

First "Tank" gets the gun charges. Now his "bodyguard" gets greased in a night club? We realize that a lot of these guys are inches away from being felons in any other profession and many times are committing what can be generously called legalized assault on the playing field, but this is becoming a bit more than a distraction.
  • Troubled Chicago Bears nose tackle Tank Johnson is cooperating with police investigating the fatal shooting of his friend inside a nightclub, authorities said Saturday.
    Police talked to Johnson at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where Willie B. Posey was pronounced dead early Saturday morning, and planned to speak with him again later Saturday, said Chicago Police Superintendent Phil Cline.

    Posey, 26, died after a fight inside Ice Bar, a club in the city's trendy River North neighborhood, Cline said.
The Sun Times also has coverage. What does any of this mean to the Bears final few games and the playoffs?

What Time is it Boys and Girls?

Why, it's time to turn in all those weapons!
  • Chicago police said Saturday afternoon they had already collected more than 500 guns in a citywide gun turn-in. More than a dozen churches were serving as collection sites where people could turn in guns anonymously and with no questions asked.
We don't know. With the homicide rate allegedly increasing, wouldn't people be more inclined to keep their weapons? Just a thought.

Saturday, December 16, 2006

Who Cares?

  • Gov. Jeb Bush suspended all executions in Florida after a medical examiner said Friday that officials botched the insertion of the needles during the execution of a convicted killer earlier this week. Dr. William Hamilton, who performed the autopsy, said that the execution of Angel Nieves Diaz took 34 minutes - twice as long as usual - and required a rare second dose of lethal chemicals because the needles were inserted straight through his veins and into the flesh in his arms. Hamilton refused to say whether he thought Diaz died a painful death.
Hell, if we had our way, the execution would have taken at least twice as long and would have been guaranteed to be EXTREMELY painful. What's the point of executing someone as a deterrent all that happens is you go into a deep sleep and never wake up? Back in the day, people weren't eager to smell their own flesh burning on Old Sparky; people were scared to face the gallows 8 foot drop; criminals were frightened of a firing squad missing all your vital organs while you were tied to a pole. It was unpleasant to say the least when the blade came slicing through your neck while a crowd cheered.

Now you inflict horrors on other human beings and all that happens is you go off into a happy place of blissful unawareness before you never wake up? Screw that. We'd rather the jagoffs go out in an untold nightmare of psychotic pain and brutality before begging to be put out of their misery. The death penalty is as much about society's vengeance as it is about justice. And if that's bloodthirsty of us, too damn bad.

Food as a Weapon?

A lot of people, experts in their fields, have said that the nations food supply is a prime target for terrorist attacks. Low levels of bio-terror could be inflicted on different parts of the supply chain to disrupt the flow of the food somehow. And not that we've heard anything about organized efforts to this end, large outbreaks of food poisoning do seem to be breaking out with startling regularity:
  • More than 300 people say they became ill, and at least three have been hospitalized, after eating at an Olive Garden restaurant last weekend, health officials said Friday. The customers complained of nausea, vomiting, fever and diarrhea.

    "We're trying to isolate what the cause of the illness might be," said Marion County Health Department spokesman John Althardt.

It's good to know that the local health authorities and the CDC can accurately pinpoint the source of an outbreak within days of occurring, but what about prevention of an actual attack that targets something in the production chain?

Friday, December 15, 2006

We're Baaaaaaack!

Rested and ready to blog. Got lots of Christmas shopping out of the way. In fact, we got each and everyone of our readers a Christmas present. Then we realized that was kind of foolish and went back to the "Returns" window and got into an argument with the clerks there because it wasn't really after Christmas yet and how did we know everyone wouldn't like what we had picked out? On with the show.

And now for something completely different

We take a break from blogging - Christmas shopping and all that you know. We shall be up and running later Friday. Don't complain - this is the first break we've taken in about a year.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Shut Up Dorothy

  • The City Council's champion for slave reparations accused Mayor Daley on Wednesday of forging ahead with the $563 million privatization of downtown parking garages in a show of "unprecedented favoritism" toward Morgan Stanley Investment Management.
Broken record. Go listen to Dr. Cosby Dorothy.

Suspect Charged

  • A 17-year-old man was charged Wednesday with the shooting of a Shakespeare District police officer who was injured while trying to break up a fight between suspected gang members on the West Side Monday.

    Roscoe Woods of the 8400 block of South Kenton Avenue was charged with one count each of attempted murder and aggravated battery with a firearm, according to Cook County State's Attorney'’s office spokesman Andy Conklin. Both offenses are Class X felonies and carry penalties of six to 30 years in prison upon conviction, he said.

RIP Peter Boyle

The role of Frankenstein's monster made this man's career as far as we're concerned. If we ever made a list of actor's we think it would be a pleasure to know and to converse with, Peter Boyle would be near the top of a very short list. He really did seem like a normal everyday kind of guy to us.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Portent of Things to Come?

It must be nice to be able to pick and choose a successor for your job without any sort of input from actual voters as Aldercreature Beavers has now done. It must also be nice for the executive of the city to have appointed something like half of the aldercreatures currently serving, thereby granting them the all important gift of "incumbency" when they run for office again. Not too much "quid pro quo" going on in the most corrupt city in the nation, eh? Sun Times and Channel 7 coverage.

And not only did "da mayor" (or "dayor" according to the CBS 2 link) appoint an additional 3 aldercreatures to the City Council Tuesday, he appointed three women. Which brings to mind an interesting question for the police department:
  • Kirby or Maher?
Based on the mayor's appointments of aldercreatures, conversations we have had, and just observations of the facts at hand, we are becoming convinced that the next Superintendent of this Department will be a woman - probably one of the two we just named. Two years ago, we'd have said the Chief of Detectives had the inside track, but now the ADS of IAD has been getting a lot of face time due to the recent scandals and everyone knows the mayor runs as a "reformer" when things get tough.

Any speculation in the comments section will be monitored overly closely. No misogynist ramblings. No crude references to body parts. We mean it.

Downtown Shooting Fallout

The "cult of victimhood" is in full swing evidently. We were kind of hoping that this habit of blaming everybody except the actual perpetrator might have died out with the last century. It is one of the most lasting and damaging legacies of the 1960's.
  • The gunman, 59-year-old Joe Jackson, was killed by police in Friday afternoon's murderous rampage. Jackson's family and friends have said he felt his portable-toilet-for-trucks invention had been ripped off.
As a result of these publicized reports, the families of the dead are not only burying their loved ones, they have to defend them from these accusations. Jackson took a gun, threatened his way into a place of business, and executed 3 people in cold blood. We don't care how passionately he believed himself to have been wronged, you just don't go and kill 3 people for this sort of thing.

As to preventing this from happening again, we have this from Channel 2:
  • A gunman's rampage at a downtown law firm last week has gun advocates renewing an old push for a change in Illinois law.

    As CBS 2's Mike Parker reports, some people say more weapons will actually reduce crime.

    A gun rights group says the victims of Friday's tragic Loop shooting rampage might still be alive if law abiding citizens were allowed to carry concealed weapons. Richard Pearson of the Illinois State Rifle Association believes armed office workers, might have stopped it.
Of course, the Brady Law people scream about bloodshed in the streets, mass killings, "think of the children!" type tragedies. But statistics show a significant drop in crime where Concealed Carry is a reality. Law abiding citizens trained and licensed DON'T go out and kill people and DON'T store their weapons improperly where children can get them. It'll never happen in Illinois, but it's an interesting debate every so often.

Food Poisoning Event

Getting a couple of reports about the recent American Knights Motorcycle Club Christmas dinner. For those unaware, the club is made up of police officers and they do a number of charity rides for different events and they've done a lot of fundraising (full disclosure - we've bought numerous tickets).

It seems about half of the attendees have come down with some nasty food poisoning. Is it just us or does it seem there are quite a few of these outbreaks occurring lately? The spinach scare; packaged salads being pulled; Taco Bell. What's going on out there?

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Daley Running Again

Wow. Big surprise. We'll go out on a limb here and predict an overwhelming victory. We'll also predict that SCC gets about 100 write-in votes. In fact, we might end up closer to the second place finisher than the second place finisher is to Daley. Any takers?

Reports at the Tribune, Sun Times, Channel 2, Channel 5, Channel 7
  • Bill Beavers, the newly-elected Cook County commissioner and former alderman, says, with his usual candor, the only thing standing between Daley and another term is a federal indictment, which, according to Beavers, is highly unlikely.
We remain hopeful.

Tour de Force?

An adequate win we suppose. All the regular links in the right hand column have coverage along with ESPN.

Media Attention

Last week, we posted about incidents of gun thefts at O'Hare airport. We asked if anyone knew if they still marked the bags with the orange tags that said "Unloaded Firearm - Steal Me!" or something similar. Our readers were helpful and explained current means of shipping weapons. We also speculated aloud that there might be unscrupulous employees marking bags to tip off workers there might be something worth stealing in a bag - they seem to hit with astonishing accuracy.

Once again, we've attracted the attention of media types who think there might be a story worth telling. Or at least, that's the line we're getting. The question posed to us via e-mail is as follows:
  • I'm wondering if you or your readers have any educated guesses about how these thefts are being pulled off. I'm also wondering if you think the airlines or TSA could be doing anything differently to reduce the opportunity for gun/ammo theft.
The simplest explanation would be as stated - someone is marking bags and tipping off workers. It would follow in a long tradition of organized crime rings operating around airports and other ports of entry (i.e. various cartage thefts; the Lufthansa heist; etc.) But we're willing to entertain other thoughts.

Now before anyone goes off half cocked and starts ripping on us for even dealing with reporters, take a deep breath. This is still a public website, accessible to anyone with an internet connection. We know Frank Main and Fran Spielman have been here a number of times and we've been contacted by Mark Brown and others. For the most part, we've been polite to anyone who drops us a line and this reporter asked the question - they're asking for an opinion, nothing that reflects Department policy, and lord knows we have plenty of opinions posted on here every single day. So if you're going to answer, be polite.

Standard disclaimers apply - we cannot guarantee that any reader or poster is actually a police officer, let alone even posting from the United States. We have readers on 4 continents. That is all.

Oh, Poor Baby

Why do they even waste newsprint and ink on stories like this?
  • Olympic bomber Eric Rudolph laments in a series of letters to a newspaper that the maximum-security federal prison where he is spending the rest of his life is designed to drive him insane.
  • Rudolph wrote that he spends 23 hours a day in his 7-by-12-foot cell, his only exercise confined to an enclosed area he described as a ''large empty swimming pool'' divided into ''dog-kennel style cages.''
  • 'Using solitary confinement, Supermax is designed to inflict as much misery and pain as is constitutionally permissible,'' he wrote in a letter.
Insanity ought to be the least of this jagoff's worries. Civilized people agree to abide by certain civilized behaviors. Setting off bombs in crowds, in clinics and hunting for first responders with secondary devices is not civilized behavior. Nice to see that he recognizes that his punishment is constitutionally permissible though. We ought to use that in arguments supporting Gitmo.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Cop Shot

Around 1500 hours in 014 - Division and Artesian. Non life threatening injuries to the arm. Info and well wishes only for this thread.

UPDATE: Links at the Tribune, Sun Times, Channel 2, Channel 5, Channel 7

Pension Disaster Looming

The Sun Times did a couple of articles last week regarding the woeful Illinois government pensions (this is one of them). From the article:
  • If Illinois government were a private business, it would be careening toward bankruptcy, an influential civic group said Wednesday in a report that identified $106 billion in liabilities that the state has no money to pay.
  • The amount equals a debt of $8,800 per Illinois resident, said the report from the Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago, a nonprofit association of elite business leaders. It said the long-term bills total nearly three times what the state spends each year in discretionary accounts, money not held aside for a specific purpose.
We don't claim to be the sharpest knife in the drawer. Far from it. But we can read different articles and we have been trained at spotting a lot of bullshit just by the nature of our job. When you spend more than you take in, you create debt. Debt creates interest. Interest drives you further into debt, affects bond ratings and raises the cost of doing business.

As we understand part of the problem, some politicians permit "deferments" of payments to pension plans. The deferments are then spent on various social programs in efforts to buy votes from special interest groups. The reverend Meeks attempt to extort $4 billion dollars from the state for "education" (and his threat to run for governor) was a prime example of robbing Peter to pay Paul - and screwing the pension plans.

The above referenced article doesn't seem to do a good job explaining how the pension plans ended up in the sorry state they are in. And the $8,800 debt per Illinois resident is kind of misleading - there are tens of thousands of people in Cook County alone who live entirely on money that has been deferred from various pension plans. How are they going to be responsible for almost $10,000 in debt? And the solution they come up with? Raise taxes. That's a political winner, eh?
  • The problem is not that people are taxed too little, the problem is that government spends too much. - Ronald Reagan
When we retire, we're moving out of state and dumping our $8,800 dollars in debt on someone else. And so are a lot of other people. Would someone care to expound on the pension problems? Succinctly? We don't want book length articles in the comments section.

What is Quinn Running For?

  • Lieutenant Governor Pat Quinn says he wants to introduce legislation to end so-called "double dipping" by banks that charge fees for using ATM's. The fees are charged to withdraw money and customers are also charged usage fees by their own banks.
Quinn plays a decent political gadfly. We know he's an old time Machine guy, but what's with these populist positions he ends up taking two or three times a year? Is he working off purgatory time for previous Machine sins? What's his angle?

Downtown Shooting - Analysis

Just a few observations on the entire situation based on conversations with involved parties, reading the comments, scanning the media articles and our conclusions:
  • For all the beatings SWAT has taken on this site over the past few weeks, they performed outstandingly in this situation.
  • The District and Area people, first on the scene, were more than outstanding. They were a credit to the entire Department.
We also read about how the building security and management were giving out conflicting information to building occupants as to "Stay in place" or "Get the hell out!" And then there was the automated PA system that was drowning out instructions the police were attempting to give and leading to more than a little frustration. This more than anything worries us about any type of attack that might occur downtown. Or in any of the large office buildings, complexes or campuses that dot the city.

No one practices evacuation once they're out of grade school. There are some companies that do it once in a great while. But in reality? We've become complacent. Again. What if this was a couple of well armed nutcases? With a car bomb nearby? Or a team of terrorists hitting two buildings or three? Are we paranoid? Or maybe a little hyper sensitive? We should all be thinking this way a little bit - but we don't see the city doing it.

Too Close to Home?

Isn't this in the neighborhood of a large number of exempt brass? And cops in general? And city workers of all stripes?
  • An autopsy showed Saturday a 23-year-old Southwest Side woman found in her bathtub was suffocated and strangled to death.
  • About 8 p.m. Friday the woman, identified by the Cook County Medical Examiner's office as 23-year-old Ursula Sakowska, was found in her bathtub in the 6100 block of South McVicker Avenue by either neighbors or friends
  • The woman, who reportedly was found with duct tape over her mouth, died from suffocation and strangulation, according to a medical examiner's office spokesman.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Griese to Get a Shot?

Report from ESPN says he got half the practice snaps this week:
  • While Chicago Bears backup quarterback Brian Griese continues to deflect questions about stepping in for a struggling Rex Grossman, it seems that the Bears are at least preparing for that possibility.

    Griese has been receiving half of the reps in practice this week, the Chicago Sun-Times reported on its Web site, citing an unnamed player.

Here's how it ought to go - Grossman gets the first half to prove himself. If Grossman sucks, he sits. If Grossman does better than a 1.3 rating like last week, Lovie and company kick it down the road another week. Griese is getting something like $14 million over 5 years to sit around. He ought to get some playing time, especially with the playoffs looming. And if the Bears are far enough ahead, start getting him some playing time.

If This Was You...

... you'd facing some serious problems. Like no more job, no more pension, no more a whole bunch of things. But if you're connected?
  • Chicago Fire Commissioner Raymond Orozco Jr. has paid the state a $15,529 fine for excessive college aid his daughter received based on phony claims made by a paid financial adviser.
  • Although Orozco considered himself and his family as victims, he's paid the $15,529 fine as part of a deal with Attorney General Lisa Madigan's office to end an investigation into the matter.
  • In a sworn statement, Orozco said that he only briefly met Martin in an initial meeting at their house. Instead of discussing the scope of Martin's worth, the commissioner left that task to his wife and chose to spend most of the time painting a daughter's bedroom.
If you can afford a $15,000 dollar fine for a $4,400 irregularity, what the hell are you doing applying for financial aid in the first place? How much does the Fire Commissioner make that financial aid is so readily available? Or is this another one of those "perks" so peculiar to the ruling class in Illinois?

It must be nice to have a spouse that can step up to the plate and be willing to take the fall for any financial missteps that happen to surface in your household.

All Bosses Read This

  • A 71-year-old Arlington Heights woman will get $4.1 million because a van driver last year ran a red light and crashed into her while he was looking down at his BlackBerry, attorneys said Friday.

    Don Svec, an employee of Berry Electric Contracting Co., was lost and using his BlackBerry's navigation device to try to find his destination, it emerged during interviews leading up to the trial in the case, said Tim Cavanagh, attorney for Dorothy Barnes, who was badly hurt in the crash.

Every time we see bosses walking around, they have their noses buried in these BlackBerry things. They go off constantly notifying them of aggravated batteries (even the ones not in their districts), e-mail, AdMin Faxes and probably stock prices and interest rate fluctuations. And since these things are still so new, EVERYONE uses them for the tiniest little thing. It's amazing no one has been in an accident yet with them - unless we haven't heard about it.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Command Changes

From the Comments Section:
  • James Keating promoted to D/C CCG
  • Steve Georgas promoted to Commander of 018
  • Kevin Ryan promoted to Commander of 001
  • Ralph Chiczewski reassigned to D/C Special Functions
  • Steve Caluris is reassigned to D/C Narcotics and Gangs
  • Robert Evans is reassigned to Commander of Traffic
and from Second City Dick:
  • ANAGRONE, Kenneth 014 From 189
  • ELMER, Richard A. 021 From 170
  • O NEILL, Donald J. 009 From 126
  • PARRA, Arthur R. 002 From 007
  • RAYMOND, Alberta 003 From 006

Home Grown Terror?

This event reminds us of the one a few decades back where a goof tried to buy a LAW rocket to shoot into the police station at Harrison and Kedzie. That incident was notable for the fact that every single individual involved was a member of some law enforcement agency aside from the jagoff who ended up getting arrested. The LAW rocket was never even close to being real and the police station was never in any real danger. The only thing real was the Libyan money involved as Khaddafy tried to buy inroads to various street gangs:
  • A Rockford man allegedly planned to set off hand grenades in garbage cans at a shopping mall near Rockford as part of his plot to let the world know "the time for jihad is now."

    Derrick Shareef, 22, targeted the Cherry Vale shopping mall, which has about 130 retail stores. But in recorded conversations he said the mall was "just one potential place," and that he hoped to one day "smoke a judge," according to the federal charges.

    Should he die before the attack, Shareef made a videotape statement to explain his actions.

This post isn't meant to diminish any real danger that might be faced in the coming years from individuals like this. In fact, we're surprised we haven't seen more types of incidents like these along the lines of the DC Beltway snipers or the El Al shooter at LAX - these lone wolf types are out there and you usually don't find them until they go off. This guy seems to have fallen for some well crafted bait and that's all well and good - he belongs behind bars. But your really dedicated types aren't out there to trade speakers for grenades. Those types are completely self sufficient and we shouldn't confuse the two.

Coverage at the Sun Times; Tribune; Channel 2; Channel 5; Channel 7

Friday, December 08, 2006

Downtown Shooting

Just a quick set of links and comments for this afternoon's incident:

We're Getting Sued?

An interesting letter we got:
  • Dear Sir/Madam, Please be advised that we represent Sgt. Christine Hitney. Please immediately remove and cease from posting the disparaging and defamatory comments and photos of her on your Blog page. In our opionion [sic], the photos and comments which are being posted of Sgt. Hitney are violative of her rights. This is a a [sic] serious matter. If you fail to comply with our request, we shall advise our client accordingly.
    Barry A. Gomberg, Esq.
    Barry A. Gomberg & Associates, Ltd.
    53 W. Jackson, Suite 1350 Chicago, IL 60604
    (312) 922-0550 Office
    (312) 922-0066 Fax
Aside from the fact that whoever typed it doesn't bother to use spell check, the writer also seems to have a tenuous grasp of actual law.

First of all, we weren't the ones who took pictures inside a crime scene (unauthorized pictures that are a violation of General Orders by the way) and then sent them around the Internet. We received the original set of pictures from 3 different individuals and the address lists of forwarded recipients was around 180 names. By her own actions, the sergeant made herself a public figure. By wearing a badge inside a designated crime scene, the sergeant was acting as a public official - private citizens weren't allowed within the tape.

Secondly, satire is protected speech. According to the FirstAmendmentCenter website:
  • satire tends to invent a fictitious situation (though possibly with elements that actually occurred) for the purpose of ridiculing someone or even some idea.
As we stated months and months ago, no reasonable person could be expected to believe that the sergeant actually was at or appeared in any of the following (click the links!):
We didn't graft the sergeant's head onto anyone else's body. We took a photo she provided to the public, a photo that is STILL AVAILABLE on the Channel 7 website archives, and put it into ridiculous situations to make a point - don't get caught doing stupid shit, especially shit that is a violation of not only General Orders, but common sense and common decency. We wonder if Channel 7 got the same letter we did?

In the case of Hustler Magazine Inc. et al v Jerry Falwell, a directed verdict cleared Hustler of invasion of privacy and libel because "no reasonable person would believe the situation depicted" would be true. The US Supreme Court further denied an emotional distress award "as public figures and public officials could not recover damages for the tort of intentional infliction of emotional distress without an additional showing that ''the publication contains a false statement of fact which was made with 'actual malice,' i.e., with knowledge that the statement was false or with reckless disregard as to whether or not it was true.""

Though it pains us to stand anywhere near Larry Flynt, he did the First Amendment to the Constitution a great service in this case.

As to the comments section, the recent California Supreme Court decision in Barrett v Rosenthal pretty much covers anything from there:
  • The California Supreme Court ruled Monday that bloggers and participants in Internet bulletin board groups cannot be sued for posting defamatory statements made by others.

    In deciding a case closely watched by free speech groups, the court said a federal law gives immunity from libel suits not only to Internet service providers, like AOL, but also to bloggers and other users of their services.

If the sergeant is demanding an apology, here it is - we're sorry you got caught doing stupid shit. We're sorry for depicting you dog sledding in Alaska and at the Southside Irish parade if in fact you attended neither. As to any of the other situations, we're afraid we don't owe you anything due to satire, freedom of speech, court decisions, etc.

By the way: have you apologized to the family of Joshua Woods? That's his family's car you can see in the background of your picture.

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