Englewood District Cmdr. Anthony Carothers was feeling the heat Thursday.
He stood at a podium in front of more than 100 supervisors and his new boss, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy.
In his Bronx brogue, McCarthy asked about a spike in shootings in Englewood over the last month compared with the same period in 2010.
Carothers attributed the violence to battles among 45 factions of the Gangster Disciples in the South Side district. But when McCarthy pressed for details, there wasn’t clear evidence of a gang motive in most of the shootings.
This sounds more like a Catholic school we heard about once:
“This is not about ‘gotcha,’ ” McCarthy said. “The sin here is not bad numbers. The sin is not knowing what’s going on and how to address it.”
Still, McCarthy warned that if he learns of a commander fudging crime statistics, “It’s a career ender.” He also told the group: “If I see anybody sleeping, I’m throwing them out of here.”
- At one point, McCarthy asked a detective how long the state crime lab takes to process bullet casings for the Chicago Police. When he was told it typically takes four to six weeks, he asked his staff to look into having the Chicago Police do the work in-house. In Newark, McCarthy noted, it usually took about a day to get ballistics results.
McCarthy returned to his battle analogy when the discussion turned to the shooting of two girls — ages 2 and 7 — on Wednesday night on a Northwest Side playlot. The 2-year-old was grazed in the head, and the 7-year-old has a serious back wound. Two men were being held for questioning in the shooting, which apparently was targeting gang members nearby. McCarthy said the department must send a message to the Maniac Latin Disciples, who are thought to be responsible.
“We’re going to obliterate that gang,” he said. “Every one of their locations has to get blown up until they cease to exist.”
We eagerly await the moment in time when a commander walks into an accountability meeting and leaves as a field lieutenant, for then and only then will we believe that Rahm has given over control of the Department to the Superintendent. But until then, clout is going to be the rule of the day.
Labels: department issues