Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Lieutenant Sounds Off

  • When we went through the police academy, we all had some senior police officer tell us “Kid – this job ain’t what it used to be.” Well,it ain’t. No matter when you came on the job, it is never the same as it used to be and it never will be. However, some things do stay the same.

    My father told me that when he entered the Chicago Police Academy in September of 1938, he heard this same saying from his instructors. Now, as I enter my thirtieth year as a Chicago police officer, proudly wearing my father‘s Lieutenant’s star number, I find myself saying exactly the same thing to the young kids working for me.

    In August of 1968 after the Democratic Convention, the Chicago Police were vilified by the media across the country as thugs and the enemy. The Chicago police officers at the convention were ordered there. They did not freely choose to be there like the demonstrators who attended the battle on Michigan Avenue. The officers were there doing their duty. Politicians and officials called for federal indictments against the police. Eight Chicago police officers were charged with civil rights violations and 41 officers were disciplined after an internal police investigation. Oh, yeah and by the way, 119 police officers were injured during the convention. That part never seems to get mentioned.

History repeating.

UPDATE: To the reading challenged, we are deleting references to "13 years." If you read carefully, you can see it says "30th." Also, the grammar police posts are getting annoying so we're deleting them, too.

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Anyone Else Feel This Way?

We're led by fools, idiots and morons:

Thanks to our west side readers for this one.

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Did You Vote?

Early voting opened up this week. There really isn't any excuse to miss adding your voice to the mix - it's almost impossible to make it any easier to vote, yet so many people don't bother.

Get out there and do it if you're registered. If you aren't registered, well, that one is on you.

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Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Hoff Gets a New Job

Gee, does this sound like a guy who was ready to quit and enjoy more time with his family?
  • Recently-retired Chicago Fire Commissioner Robert Hoff was hired as a deputy fire chief for the Carol Stream Fire Protection District.

    The district's board of trustees on Monday voted 3 to 2 to hire Hoff, 56, a third-generation hero firefighter for the $115,000-a-year position.

    Hoff had previously indicated that his departure was to spend more time with his family.

The Daily Herald story is here.

Anyone else want to call "bullshit" on the administration's take that Hoff was ready to retire and his going head-to-head with Rahm over manning and safety issues had nothing to do with it?

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The Seattle Template

  • Nobody’s ready to start talking about the "mean streets" of Seattle. But an alarming spike in street violence in this usually mellow city has everyone running scared. Mayor Mike McGinn, calling the increase a “public safety emergency,” pledged Monday to beef up police patrols and urged citizens to help combat lawlessness in their neighborhoods.

    “This is an issue that requires more than just a police response,” McGinn said at a community meeting in the city’s hard-hit Rainier Beach neighborhood, one of several hit by killings this year. Many of the nine slayings so far this year remain unsolved.

    “I cannot emphasize enough that our response to crime and safety in our communities is dependent upon a very strong partnership between city government and the community,” he said. “Everyone who lives here, who works here, who shops here, and who comes here to enjoy what Seattle has to offer deserves to feel safe and secure.”

Gee, nine murders? Around here, we call that "Englewood."

But seriously, even the language reads the sale as what we were hearing after the downtown wildings the media refused to cover for months. We have a feeling this "public safety emergency" is a phrase that might be seen a lot this summer.

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2012 v 2011

January 2012 started with a bang. Actually a bunch of bang-bangs and the homicide rate shot up some 44% as compared to January 2011.

We pointed out that Sneed was carrying water for the department and the Rahm administration by reporting that the homicide rate has slowed to a mere 9% increase in mid-February.

Now comes word that the February 2012 numbers have surpassed the February 2011 numbers in homicides and aggravated batteries...whoops, we mean murders and shootings, so everything from this point forward in February is bonus territory.

And a warm week is on tap for the start of March.

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Technical Notes

We've seen the questions about posts with over 200 comments - why do the oldest comments disappear and the comment section fail to have the "view older comment" button as in the past?
  • We have no idea and have been in contact with the blogger help staff to see if this is a problem unique to SCC or across the blogger network. No answer is forthcoming at this time.

We also saw a complaint about the new comment format.

  • It seem blogger has made some changes to their templates and again, we have nothing to do with it. We're haven't changed any of our template settings in over 6 years now, but blogger keeps upgrading and changing things. Some of it we can decline. Some we can't. It's a free service, so we can't really bitch about it.
Comments closed here for now.

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Holiday to be Canceled?

Hot rumor:
  • heard a Rumor that more ways to save money are on the way. Logic is if it doesn't exist why have a payed holiday for it. Talking about CAPS, heard that the city is using the same logic they applied to watch commanders. Call it something else and then you don't have to pay for the old title.

We're actually surprised this hasn't popped up more frequently. Thirteen holidays is quite a bit...at least one or two more than most city departments, and the CAPS holiday is pretty much a big fat target for Rahm and the administration.

That being said, it's still a part of the contract and must be negotiated over. Rahm can't just take things away, no matter what he wants to do. We fully expect this to be part of the "austerity cuts" proposed this summer and it could be a winner for Rahm. Maybe if we headed the city off at the pass? Suggest a holiday cut for something substantial in negotiations and then a public push for how reasonable we're being in the face of Rahm's proposed cuts to the bone? We certainly need to be seen as more proactive and a willing partner in negotiations. Just saying "no" to Rahm isn't going to fly in this atmosphere. Rahm controls the media and plays everyone against each other. Time to take a page out of his book.

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What Sides You Want With That?

  • A rooster with a broken wing that was rescued after causing a brief interruption to Blue Line service overnight in the Logan Square neighborhood has to be euthanized, authorities said.

    It wasn’t known how the animal got onto the northbound tracks at the Logan Square subway station, but power was turned off at 12:14 a.m., according to CTA spokeswoman Catherine Hosinski. The stop is located at 2620 N. Milwaukee Ave.

    Chicago Police and personnel from the city’s Dept. of Animal Care and Control were summoned to the scene to assist it off the track and 12 minutes later, the service was restored, Hosinski said.

    Animal control executive director Cherie Travis said the bird suffered a broken wing.

    “Unfortunately, the vet examined the rooster and determined that he has a broke wing and will be euthanized,’’ said Travis.

And eaten, we hope. Otherwise it's just going to sit in the morgue on a tray with the rest of the dead bodies.

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Monday, February 27, 2012

Cop Shot - Non Life Threatening

  • A Chicago police officer was shot and wounded in the foot this morning following a miles-long pursuit that ended near Rainbow Beach on the city's lakefront, officials said.

    The unidentified officer was taken to Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn with non-serious injuries, said a police source, who asked not to be identified.

    A Chicago police spokesman had no details on the shooting.

Two in custody. And surprise surprise! It started in Englewood.

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Violence Continues

  • One man was killed and two teens were hospitalized after being shot this afternoon in a drive-by shooting in the West Pullman neighborhood on the far South Side, police said.

    But officials said seven others, including four children, were injured in a traffic crash that occurred as paramedics were being dispatched to the shooting, said Chicago Fire Department Chief Joseph Roccasalva.

    Police were called to the 11600 block of South Ada Street shortly after 3:30 p.m., police said.

Remember, if it didn't happen in 007 or 011, no one at 35th Street cares.

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latin king Runs for Clerk

Not only does he have a UUW arrest for holding guns for the kings in his background, his family was notorious for running a fake ID ring up and down 26th Street, his father was convicted and faces deportation after his sentence is complete, the building housing the Photo Estudio Munoz burned down under suspicious circumstances, and he has a short temper and is inclined to violence as evidenced on YouTube when citizens confront him.

Oh yeah, he's also an alderdcreature. Thank goodness he isn't designing city stickers.

Yet somehow none of that manages to disqualify him for running for higher office:
  • The most prominent Cook County primary race this year is for an office that generally is low-profile: clerk of the Circuit Court.

    Chicago Ald. Ricardo Munoz (22nd), who has been on the City Council since 1993, is challenging three-term incumbent Dorothy Brown, also of Chicago.

    At the heart of the race is what many rank-and-file lawyers privately regard as a scandal: the office’s inefficiency in handling court records and the frequency with which key documents go missing. One Chicago politician jokes that the office is so antiquated that it’s the largest consumer of carbon paper anywhere.

    Both Munoz and Brown claim they can fix those problems.

Of course, Brown is no prize herself, steeped in Machine politics and with all sorts of mini-scandals surrounding her tenure. But with these two idiots in the mix, is it any wonder Chicago wins the "most corrupt" title hands down?

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Fake Gun

Completely justified. Too bad they didn't kill him:
  • Police opened fire on but did not strike a 17-year-old who pointed a fake gun at them in a Northwest Side alley Saturday night. The 17-year-old was later found hiding in the area and faces a number of charges, while another male he was with remained at large Sunday.

    About 7:30 p.m. Saturday, officers on patrol in the area saw the two males acting suspiciously in an alley in the 5300 block of North Natoma Avenue, police News Affairs [...] said.

    The two fled as officers came to investigate. At one point, the 17-year-old reportedly turned and aimed a weapon — later discovered to be fake — at the officers. [...] the officers feared their safety and fired shots at the young man, but their bullets did not strike him or his companion.

Better luck next time.

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Jury Convicts Assailant

  • A hotel manager from Arlington Heights was found guilty of attempting to murder a Chicago Police officer by dragging him from his speeding Mercedes-Benz before pushing him out and running him over with his car near the busy Rush Street nightlife district.

    Cook County jurors also convicted Michael Cacini, 36, of aggravated battery Friday for the April 20, 2010 attack that left Near North District officer Kristopher Rigan with a dislocated shoulder, missing teeth and abrasions to his arms.

    The father of six was also convicted of striking Rigan’s partner Thomas O’Shaughnessy with his vehicle as O’Shaughnessy rushed to his colleague’s aid at 10 West Elm.

Interestingly, we were also informed of the following:

  • The defense atty in this Attmpt Murder To P.O. case is Sam Amirante. Thought you may find this interesting. Here we have an atty who is the chairman of the board for the Italian American Police Association here in Chicago defending a man accused of trying to murder a policeman .....The Attorney also attends FOP golf outings with the pics on his law office web site to promote it. He even links the police association on his law office web page. This guy is defending murderers and accused cop killers and he is honored at police functions. He most recently received and honor from the Italian Police Association. This is absolutely absurd and wrong on so many levels
Amirante also participated in the defense of John Wayne Gacy. Anyone else think the FOP and the IAPA ought to rethink their association with someone who plays both sides of the fence?

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019 District Photo

The latest in a series:
  • 19th District Station Photo

    The 19th District is closing on 3 March 2012. All past and present officers are encouraged to come and get in the closing photograph.

    1 March 2012 @ 1300 hours

    Please spread the word…
Reach out to the retirees if you know any.

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The Most Interesting Man in the World

We're flattered:


We've seen a bunch of these where you can make your own and entertain your friends. Have at it.

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Sunday, February 26, 2012

A Cry for Help

  • Yipes!

    Police Supt. Garry McCarthy’s plans for enlisting police security for the G-8/NATO summits this spring is so hush-hush, Sneed hears it’s got statewide security agencies in a swivet.

    “It’s almost March and the two summits are in May,” said a top security source. “What’s up?”

    “There is no way Illinois agencies outside Cook County have the manpower to help Chicago without the numbers the New York Police Department could provide,” said another source.

    McCarthy, who has yet to comment on whether he requested help from New York, “has status with them and they have a force of 30,000, twice the size of Chicago’s police force,” said another security source.

    But some plans are under way:

    *Sneed has learned the Chicago Police Department has requested the help of 350 cops from police departments across the state, according to a recent email dispatched by the Illinois Law Enforcement Alarm System.

    *Assistance from Illinois State Police also has been requested, but Sneed hears only about 250 police officers could be spared.

    So how many Chicago cops are needed?

    *It took 4,000 cops to handle the G-8 a few years back in Pittsburgh, which had a police force of less than 1,000 officers.

    *It took at least 2,000-plus cops from outside the Chicago area to help control crowds on election night 2008, when President-elect Barack Obama addressed an excited crowd at Grant Park.

    *Response: “We are assessing our needs as we plan, and that includes the use of in-state and out-of-state sworn personnel,” police spokesman Melissa Stratton said Saturday. “We are not limiting candidates to one state or agency. We don’t have the final footprint for the summits so we won’t be able to finalize the number of sworn personnel we will be utilizing from other agencies until closer to the event.”

    *Meanwhile: Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who is this/close to President Barack Obama, was in Washington midweek to meet with Homeland Security chief Janet Napolitano to discuss Chicago’s upcoming double summit and federal help.

Everyone keeps says how the CPD "handled" the Obama crowds in 2008 with just 2,000 cops (completely disregarding the widespread, yet unreported, rioting on the west and south sides). Anyone who has studied crowd dynamics knows there is a distinct difference between a crowd out celebrating (although lord knows what they were happy about looking back 3 years) and a mob out looking for trouble, destruction and targets to vent their anger upon.

Of course, our readers have been bringing this up since the events were announced, but what the hell do they know?

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On Duty Death

Twenty-five year vet passes of what appears to be a heart attack:
  • A Chicago Police officer suffered a heart attack and died while working in River West Saturday.

    Preston Ross Jr., 48, was in full uniform, working near the CTA Blue Line station at Grand and Milwaukee when he began having problems breathing and collapsed, authorities said.

    A Chicago Fire Department ambulance took the 25-year police veteran to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 10 a.m., police spokesman [...] said. A police motorcade later escorted the officer’s body from Northwestern Memorial to the Stein Institute, where an autopsy will be performed.

Godspeed Officer Ross.

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Shots Fired in 016

  • Chicago police searched for two men who fled after they were involved in an altercation with officers during which shots were fired on the Northwest Side tonight, police said.

    The incident began at about 7:40 p.m. in the alley behind the 5300 block of North Natoma Avenue, police said.

    The men were being questioned by police, and preliminary reports indicated shots were fired by police in the incident but no one was hit, said [...] Police News Affairs.

    A police officer was taken to Resurrection Medical Center with a hand injury, said Chicago Fire Department Chief Joseph Roccasalva. The officer was in good condition.

    [....] A weapon was recovered from the scene, according to police.

Be very careful out there.

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The Net Draws Tighter

  • The one-time business partner of former Mayor Richard Daley’s son who was ensnared in a federal minority contract investigation has pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI about his failure to disclose two key investors in a sewer company that got city work.

    The two undisclosed investors previously have been identified by the Tribune as the former mayor’s son, Patrick Daley, and the mayor’s nephew, Robert G. Vanecko.

    Anthony Duffy, 47, pleaded guilty Friday to lying to agents when he was queried about his failure to disclose information about two investors on economic disclosure statements he was required to file with the city on behalf of his company, Municipal Sewer Services.

Gee, a Daley and Venecko involved in some shady deal. Who'd have thunk it?

Hey Anthony? Save yourself a few years and give up the connected princes.

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Saturday, February 25, 2012

More G8 Rumors (UPDATE)

If even a quarter of these rumors turn out to be true, we are in for a world of hurt:
  • Rumor today says feds had a meeting and said they needed 6000 officers for 12 hour shifts times 2. ooops we don't have that many!

    Rumor also has heard they need 80 cars and 160 officers for 2 presidential details and 5 dignitary details, that another 80 cars and 160 PO's. oops. where we gonna get them?

    We don't have the MANPOWER as far as I can see. I'm just a dumb day guy with time on the job, but this looks like a disaster.
Now we're hearing that the FEMA guidelines for large scale events with the potential for disorder are being blatantly ignored by those in charge of planning the Department's response to this event. This would seem to open the door for liability on the part of the city on a bunch of fronts.

UPDATE: Commentators are saying Second Watch training has been suspended for the time being? Second Watch may not be going downtown after all. Of course, we're somewhere under 80 days until officers might actually need some of this training, but that's no reason to worry, right? It's not like we're unable to pull entire ranks of officers off of the street and train them up in a day or so.

Anyone else wondering about the possibility of actually canceling days off in March so that they can train up the rank-and-file?

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Weekend Starts Badly (Plus One)

At least for some people. We actually had a good day.
  • At least six people were shot Friday between noon and 8 p.m., according to Chicago police.

    Two died.

Supposedly, G-Mac had a couple of commanders in his office to "discuss" the spate of shootings last weekend. We guess the gang bangers didn't get the memo to "knock it off" this weekend though.

UPDATE: Someone must have turned up at a hospital with a gunshot wound later. Add one to the totals.

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New Cars!

  • The Chicago Police Department will purchase 500 Ford Interceptor sedans and SUV’s over the next five years built at a South Side plant that recently added a third shift and 1,200 jobs, Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Friday.

    “We not only have the cars built here in Chicago, designed here in Chicago. We’re gonna put our money where our mouth is. We’re gonna order the cars here from this plant,” Emanuel told a news conference at the Ford assembly plant at 12600 S. Torrence.

    The mayor noted that production of the Interceptor — designed to replace the old Crown Victoria as a police staple — was “consolidated from Canada” at the Torrence Avenue plant. That accounted for 230 of the 1,200 new jobs.

And look! Rahm is claiming a bunch of new jobs, too. Still no word on how any of the G8/NATO crap is actually going to benefit Chicago economically though.

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Cameras Make You Safer, Right?

  • London is considered the most spied-on city in the world, courtesy of its ubiquitous CCTV cameras, purportedly there to reduce crime. But according to a recent report, there's been little or no change in London's crime rates since they were more widely installed in the mid 1980s.

    Privacy activists are worried that Britain will become the bleak totalitarian society George Orwell painted in his classic novel “1984,” where citizens were spied on and personal freedom sacrificed for the benefit of an all-powerful state.

    “We are sleepwalking into a surveillance society where we’re watched from control rooms by anonymous people, says Emma Carr of the BBW. “The worrying thing is that we don’t actually know how many CCTV cameras there are out there."
Remember, London is the example cited by Shortshanks as his inspiration for sticking cameras all over the place. London is years, maybe even a decade ahead of Chicago in terms of deploying camera technology, and it has had exactly ZERO effect on crime.

But hey, it' must be "for the children" or something, right? Because what could actually justify spending millions, maybe a few billion when it's all over, on something that doesn't affect crime and has never actually arrested a criminal in the history of the world.

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Friday, February 24, 2012

Suspected Killer Convicted

  • A reputed gang member who was once implicated in the killing of a Chicago police officer – only to have those charges later dropped -- was found guilty today by a federal jury on drug charges.

    Prosecutors said Jason “J-Rock” Austin was overseeing a 24-hour heroin and crack market at Kedzie Avenue and Ohio Street known as “KO.”

    Austin was charged by Cook County prosecutors in 2008 for killing off-duty Chicago police Officer Richard Soto and Soto’s companion.

    Prosecutors dropped the case a month later due to lack of evidence and problems with statements from witnesses.

At this point, we'll take what we can get. Maybe with this scumbag off the street, someone previously unwilling to come forward might feel a little safer doing so? This case was a straight up textbook example of gang intimidation, witness tampering and lord knows what other mischief.

Oh, and Ms. Sweeney? Officer Soto's given name was Robert. Bobby to his friends. Please correct your article.

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What Else is Closing? (Money/No Money)

It certainly seems that certain segments of Chicago don't believe all the tripe coming out of City Hall about how safe it's going to be during the week-plus of G8/NATO.

Now Rahm is promising money for business losses that haven't even happened yet:
  • Businesses that suffer losses during the upcoming NATO and G-8 Summits because they’re located within the “inner-most” security perimeter could be in line for financial compensation.

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Thursday the NATO and G-8 Host Committee is working on a mechanism to compensate businesses for lost revenues during the May 19-21 summits at McCormick Place.

    The mayor was asked whether businesses located within the inner-most security perimeter will have a process to recover lost profits inccured incur during the event.

    “The Host Committee is working on it. They’ll have a process for that,” he answered.

Government reimbursing private entities because they cannot guarantee the safety and security of their buildings, property and employees. And look what else is closing:

  • The potential for claims is staggering.

    Already, DePaul University has decided to close its Loop campus on the day before and the day after the summits and deny access to classrooms, labs, the cafeteria and offices in the Loop campus over a four-day period.

    The Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago has said it has “extensive contingency plans” that would allow its employees to “work from home” or from an “off-site location” in the event that demonstrations turn ugly during the summits.

    The bank is located at 230 S. LaSalle in the heart of Chicago’s financial district.

    And the Chicago Sun-Times reported earlier this week that the civil courtrooms at the Daley Center — an integral part of the nation’s second-largest court system — could be closed down for security reasons in the days surrounding the unprecedented gathering of world leaders.

How about fencing off all of downtown for the duration, then sending in the street sweepers afterward?

UPDATE: Now there is no money:
  • For a short time it appeared that Chicago area businesses would be entitled to reimbursement for any unscheduled closures due to the upcoming NATO and G8 summits.

    Protests and security restrictions at previous summits have forced stores to close.

    At an event Thursday, reporters asked Mayor Emanuel whether Chicago might compensate businesses for any disruption during the summits; Emanuel said there is a process in place for determining whether reimbursements are warranted.

    But shortly after the mayor's remarks, Chicago's G8-NATO Host Committee said there is no plan to reimburse businesses.
This entire city is a comedy of errors.

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Big Nuts = Big Indictment

  • The “Hog” says he wouldn’t squeal — and he got indicted because of it.

    Cook County Commissioner William Beavers, an old-school Chicago politician who likes to call himself “The Hog With the Big Nuts,” has been indicted on federal tax charges.

    The feds allege he failed to pay taxes on $225,000 from his campaign accounts and used it for personal expenses including gambling and boosting his city pension.

    A federal grand jury found he illegally converted more than $225,000 in campaign funds into income and failed to pay taxes on it between 2006 and 2008, prosecutors said.

    But Beavers, 77, said they only indicted him because he refused to wear a wire on fellow Commissioner John Daley, the former mayor’s brother.

    “They tried to get to me to become a stool pigeon and I wouldn’t become a stool pigeon,” Beavers said Thursday, telling the Sun-Times he hadn’t been told of the indictment. “They wanted me to wear a wire on John Daley. S---.”

Unfortunately, the chances of Beavers pulling what we'll call a "Bill Henry" are better than average. Hog Nuts is old and if he drags things out, he might actually beat the Feds by his mere mortality. But it's nice to see this asshole continuing the fine Chicago tradition of sending current and former aldercreatures to the pen.

Now that John Daley wire....there's something that deserves a bit more exploration.

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USSC Protects Officers

  • The Supreme Court said Wednesday that California police officers cannot be sued because they used a warrant that may have been defective to search a woman's house.

    The high court threw out the lawsuit against Los Angeles County Sheriff's Detective Curt Messerschmidt and other police officials, who were being sued personally by Augusta Millender for the search on her house and confiscation of her shotgun.

  • The court on a 6-3 vote overturned [the Ninth US Circuit Court] decision.

    "The officers' judgment that the scope of the warrant was supported by probable cause may have been mistaken, but it was not 'plainly incompetent," said Chief Justice John Roberts, who wrote the court's majority opinion. "On top of all this, the fact that the officers sought and obtained approval of the warrant application from a superior and a deputy district attorney before submitting it to a magistrate provides further support for the conclusion that an officer could reasonably have believed that the scope of the warrant was supported by probable cause."

Make a note.

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Thursday, February 23, 2012

Closings Confirmed

From the comment section:
  • The Lodge has been notified that the 019 & 021 District closings will be effective on Sunday, March 4, 2012.

    Officers working the 3rd watch on Saturday, March 3, 2012 will report to their current District of Assignment for roll call to pick up their car and radio. These Officers will check off in the 023rd District or 002nd District. Transport vans will be available to assist these Officers in picking up their personal vehicles.

    Officers working the 1st watch on Saturday night for March 4, 2012 will report to their current District of Assignment for roll call to pick up their car and radio. These Officers will check off in the 023rd District or 002nd District. Transport vans will be available to assist these Officers in picking up their personal vehicles.

    Officers working the 2nd watch on Sunday, March 4, 2012 will report to their new unit of assignment.

    Unit designators will be distributed to those members assigned to a new unit. Officers assigned to the new 019th Town Hall District will receive key cards for access to the building prior to the change.

    The 021st District Station will be locked at 0800 hours on Sunday, March 4, 2012. Any locker that is not vacated will have the lock cut off, the contents removed, and those contents inventoried. Officers should make every attempt to notify a member who is on furlough, extended medical, etc.

    The Department intends on making the Area changes effective Sunday, March 4, 2012, but has not released any details on the moves. The Department is working with other City services to repair the parking lot at Area 1. Signage will be in place on Wentworth Avenue to designate additional parking spaces. The heliport at Area 1 will be converted to additional parking spaces.

Hold on tight. We're sure this little shake-out cruise is going to be a bit bumpy for a while.

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Ammo Tax

We predict Indiana and Wisconsin will see a monstrous jump in sales should this take effect, not to mention mail order places that deliver from out-of-state. Typical democrats - "let's tax the law abiding to pay for the assholes breaking the law on a daily basis!"
  • An Illinois lawmaker wants gun owners to shell out extra taxes in order to finance a new grant program for trauma centers, a move firearms advocacy groups say amounts to a "sin tax" on law-abiding hunters and target shooters.

    State Rep. Kelly Cassidy, in a bill introduced earlier this month, proposed a 2 percent surtax on ammunition. The proceeds would go toward a "high-crime trauma center grant fund," which would then send the tax money to trauma centers in "high-crime areas."

We'd say that downstate will help kill this bill, seeing as how they actually vote for leaders who listen to their constituents, but who knows what will happen in Illinois?

We will say that ISRA and the NRA get results though. You can join both of these fine organizations by clicking on the links on the right hand side of the blog.

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Taste of Failure

  • Chicago restaurants are not exactly chomping at the bit to participate in Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to shrink and revamp Chicago’s premier summer festival — by cutting Taste of Chicago from 10 days to five and bumping it to mid-July.

    Only 40 restaurants applied to participate for the full five days, precisely the number of openings the city hopes to fill. That prompted the Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events to extend Tuesday’s deadline until the close of business Friday.

Four years of gunfire, gangs and wilding haven't lent themselves to people wanting to attend either. And no fireworks. It's just disaster piled on disaster.

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No Bail for Shooter

  • A 21-year-old South Side man charged with shooting a Chicago police officer in the South Shore neighborhood on Sunday was ordered held without bail today.

    Cortez Ross, of the 4300 block of South Champlain Avenue, faces attempted first degree murder and aggravated battery charges.

    Ross was ordered held without bail in a court hearing midday today before Cook County Criminal Court Judge Maria Kuriakos Ciesil.

Thanks Judge Ciesel.

Has anyone heard how the officer is doing? The media keeps saying "through and through wound" in his hand, but the hand is a mess of small bones pretty close together. It's nothing like a flesh wound through a meaty leg or arm. "Through and through" is going to leave a pretty big mark.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2012

All Your G8/NATO Answers

The Department has set up an e-mail address for everyone who has questions about G8/NATO events.
  • G8NATO@chicagopolice.org

You have questions about hours, deployment, assignments, gear, first issue, OT, anything at all, this e-mail address has been set up to help you.

Media trolls? You have questions?

  • G8NATO@chicagopolice.org

They have all your answers. Media staging areas, Press ID, parking, auxiliary power set ups for media vans - it's all there.

Protestors? You want to know what is permitted?

  • G8NATO@chicagopolice.org
You can get a complete list of allowable signs, bullhorn permits, parade permits, park closing times, police responses, bond amounts, processing locations, court branches.

Write today! Helpful staff is awaiting your e-mail today!

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Big Rumor Out of Training

Supposedly, the G-8 trainers have let the cat out of the bag:
  • Second Watch is going to be the downtown force. First and Third watches will be covering the districts.
This has popped up in a few comment sections over the past few days.

Are they trying to provoke a mass wave of retirements?

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Overetime Cuts

Rumors floating in from some of our sources:
  • Hey SCC, have you heard this one?

    Starting immediately, GEU (the Gang Enforcement Unit) will be limited to around 5,000 hours of overtime for the entire Unit for all of 2012.

    That means no chasing down leads, tips and clues. Everything will be filed and passed onto the next crew for follow up. That also means pulling the gang guys off the street to do paper for the file. All court will be when on duty or you don't go, meaning the afternoon crews will be working days for Court appearances.

    The Fugitive Unit is next, and supposedly, they are going to try to limit Detective overtime to 20 hours per member per pay period. Watch the clearance rate plummet to zero.
Sounds like a lot of Continuing Investigations and stalled charging. Those "volunteer units" like GEU and Fugitives are looking less and less desirable without the OT aspect. Anyone got the scoop on these?

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Seriously?

Anita Alvarez continues to make the entire Koschman affair look like the biggest coverup since Watergate:
  • Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez is fighting an effort by the family of David Koschman to make public transcripts of witness interviews related to Koschman’s homicide case.

    “The wholesale disclosure of the information that the petitioners request would disrupt the ongoing criminal investigation and further undermine an already dim prospect of any future criminal prosecution” of Richard J. Vanecko, a nephew of former Mayor Richard M. Daley, Alvarez said Tuesday in an 11-page filing.

What future criminal prosecution? Hasn't Anita and her people said there will be no prosecution? Everything they've said to this point implies there won't be any justice for David Koschman.

Oh wait, the civil suit. Right, we had forgotten about that. Anita has to continue to protect the Daley crime family from embarrassment and the criminal justice system.

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Money Appears! Again

  • Malcolm X College will get a new $251 million campus as part of Mayor Rahm Emanuel's push to turn the community college into a pipeline for the health care jobs he says will be a major growth area in Chicago.
Well, the pension funds must be safe if Rahm feels good enough to spend so much money. Congratulations Chicago!

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Another Bright Idea

  • A super-maximum security prison in Downstate Tamms that human-rights groups contend is inhumane and a women’s maximum-security prison in Dwight face closure under a proposed spending plan that Gov. Pat Quinn’s administration described as “the toughest budget we’ve faced.”

    The governor’s intended mothballing of those two facilities comes on top of his planned closures of two youth-detention centers and six secure halfway houses, the latter of which could result in the early release of as many as 1,000 inmates into the general public, the state government’s largest employee union predicted Tuesday.

That "crime is down" bullshit won't survive a month - just like last time Quinn released a few thousand inmates early. That spike left a trail of bodies across all of Cook County.

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Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Horses Get Equipment

  • Horses in the Chicago Police Department’s Mounted Unit assigned to crowd control during the NATO and G-8 summits will be outfitted with “riot gear,” just like the officers riding them and those on the ground facing off against protesters.

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration is soliciting bids for “police horse riot gear and training aids” in preparation for the May 19-21 summits at McCormick Place expected to shine an international spotlight on Chicago.

  • An officer assigned to the Mounted Unit, who asked to remain anonymous, noted that some of the 30 horses “may not be street-ready” in time for the NATO and G-8 summits.

    “If you look at our manpower, there’s enough of us where we could take a city street. If they split us up, we could possibly do two locations, but our effectiveness would be diminished. That’s the most they could get out of us: two locations. And these demonstrators could be everywhere,” the officer said.

We're sure it's one of those non-competitive bids, too.

We're waiting for the bid to come out for "Lances, Shields, Maces and Plate Armor." A good old fashioned cavalry charge might be exactly what is needed to clear the streets at some point.

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Sentencing at 26th Street

Evidently, a whole bunch of friends of the convicted are going to pack the room:
  • I am writing this to inform officers that tomorrow, 21 Feb 12, offender Howard Morgan who shot two police officers in 05 is being sentenced.

    An officer safety alert was issued for the four officers(victims)in this case today because apparently shitheads sent out flyers to pack rm 600 to protest the sentencing.

    If any officers in court at 26 can stop by rm 600 to show support it would be greatly appreciated. thanks in advance
Stop by to help make sure this asshole gets the max.

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How Goes the War?

  • The intersection looks like countless others on the Northwest Side.

    Lots of trees, well-kept frame homes, a plant-filled traffic circle.

    But there’s also a street sign spray-painted with a blue pitchfork — the symbol of the Maniac Latin Disciples.

    It’s Barry and Spaulding. “B.S.” for short. The gang members who call it their turf, however, have a new name for the neighborhood surrounding B.S.

    “It’s like the Bermuda Triangle,” one high-ranking gang member told the Chicago Sun-Times. “As long as you fly around it, you’re OK. But the minute you drive in there, you get sucked in [by the police.]”

The article goes on to quote all sorts of anonymous and even "ranking gang members" who claim the heat is so bad on them that they can't even sell dope in the hood anymore. Boo-freaking-hoo.

Here's a truly odd quote though - we hear this far more among cops and the law abiding citizens than gang bangers. In fact, we can't ever remember this coming up among the criminal set:

  • Maniac Latin Disciples members are now under gang orders to keep violence to a minimum because of the police crackdown, the ranking member said. Still, they’re continuing to arm themselves for self-defense, he said.

    “Everybody’s toting a gun,” he said. “I’d rather be judged by 12 than carried by six. You can’t disarm because you’re vulnerable.”

Go read it and venture an opinion here. The stats say crime is down, but the people talking to Frank claim everyone is running around armed to the teeth. Something doesn't ring true to our ears, but maybe we're just cynical.

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94% Clearance Rate

You want to see how easy it is to manipulate statistics until the numbers start to scream? Look how they do it in Washington DC:
  • For the past two months, D.C. Police Chief Cathy L. Lanier has touted the city’s astronomically high homicide closure rate — 94 percent for 2011 — and warned anyone contemplating murder in the District to think twice.

    “Your risk of being caught is pretty high if you commit a homicide in D.C.,” Lanier told The Washington Post in December.

Wow. They must have the best detectives in the whole world, right?

  • But an examination of District homicides found that the department’s closure rate is a statistical mishmash that makes things seem much better than they are. The District had 108 homicides last year, police records show. A 94 percent closure rate would mean that detectives solved 102 of them. But only 62 were solved as of year’s end, for a true closure rate of 57 percent, according to records reviewed by The Post.

    D.C. police achieved the high closure rate last year by including about 40 cases from other years that were closed in 2011.

57% is still almost double Chicago's rate. But you can see exactly how data manipulation leads to a slightly skewed view of results and how the political structure can use the revised data to achieve a certain end.

Anyone want to bet what big city department is about to start torturing their own numbers to make sure a certain politician has a shot at a Senate seat, maybe even a presidential run?

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Sneed Proves CompStat Sucks

Saturday is a throwaway newspaper day. Anything that shouldn't see the light of day goes in the Saturday rag. Here's what Sneed had in her column:
  • Chicago’s murder rate, which had been sky rocketing off the charts early this year, has eased up dramatically.

    * Background: The first 23 days of 2012 saw a 74 percent increase in murders compared to the same time period last year (from 19 murders in 2011 to 33 this year).

    * Foreground: As of Friday, statistics show the murder rate is now only 9 percent greater than it was this time last year (from 44 murders in 2011 up to 48 in 2012).

    * The reason: Police spokesman [...], citing preliminary information, attributed the drop to a recent saturation of police resources in the 7th and 11th districts — which accounted for nearly one third of this year’s murders.
So all those resources poured into 007 and 011, two communities that have been at war with each other as well as the police for nearly 50 years now, and all we have to show for it is that the city murder rate is still rising.....but at least it's rising slower.

That's what passes for good news around here - it's only up 9%.

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Wasting Money

  • Once meant for public trains and buses, the untouched heaters, rod ends and spools of copper wire have instead collected dust for years at the Chicago Transit Authority's main warehouse.

    But a cleanup is under way.

    As part of the initiative to cut costs and increase efficiency, the CTA plans to auction off about one-third of its total inventory of unused parts and supplies in late spring, officials said. It will also hire a qualified company to manage inventory, they said.

The qualified company being Vanecko Widget Counters Incorporated.

Poor management of a city leads to this:

  • Mayor Rahm Emanuel is mounting a challenge to 2010 U.S. Census estimates that Chicago lost about 200,000 residents.

    Big city mayors regularly contest the once-a-decade census results, which determine how much federal funding flows to different parts of the country. Chicago would gain about $1,200 annually for the next decade for each person added to the official population, according to Emanuel’s office.

    Emanuel’s predecessor, Mayor Richard Daley, launched an unsuccessful bid to get Chicago’s 2000 population numbers increased. In 1990, Daley and other mayors tried futilely to get Congress to give them additional time to fight the census results.
Money being spent that Chicago doesn't have, to get more money from Washington that Obama doesn't have either.

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Monday, February 20, 2012

West, South Sides Go Up


Crime is down!! All is well!!
  • A man was shot dead and another was critically wounded within minutes of each other in separate shootings late this afternoon on the city's West Side.

    About 5:43 p.m., a 30-year-old man was shot on the 3000 block of West 25th Street. He was pronounced dead at the scene, said Police News Affairs [...]. As of 6:15 p.m., the Cook County medical examiner's office was not notified of the death.

    About 5:41 p.m., another man, described as being in his 30s, was critically wounded in a shooting near Pulaski Road and Lexington Avenue. He was shot in the abdomen, O'Brien said.

  • Two people are dead and five others were wounded tonight in an apparent drive-by shooting near a liquor store on the South Side, officials said.

    The shooting happened about 6:46 p.m. near or in a store located on the 2500 block of East 79th Street, police said.

Someone want to add the Friday night, Saturday and Sunday total casualties up?

Plus, it's a three day weekend - we still have to get through Monday.

And we're looking at straight middle-to-high 40's all week. Perfect shooting weather.

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Cutting Crime

  • A person was fatally shot by a homeowner during an alleged home invasion this morning in rural LaSalle County, police said.

    According to a press release from the LaSalle County Sheriff’s Office, the police were notified about 3 a.m. of an alleged home invasion on County Highway One south of Earlville.

    Two individuals reportedly entered the residence, the release said. One was shot by the homeowner; that person was transported to Mendota Community Hospital, where he was pronounced dead in the emergency room.

See ya later dirtbag.

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Nothing to See Here

Remember, CompStat tells us crime is down. All of these incidents, gleaned from the media reports by a helpful reader, mean nothing, nothing at all:

  • Just when they start to brag about Agg Batteries and homicides (sorry, shootings and murders) being down along comes another unseasonably warm weekend:

    3 shot, 1 dead in 014 (2 incidents)
    1 dead in 009
    1 dead in 017
    2 shot in 003
    1 shot in 006
    1 shot in 010
    1 shot in 011 (oops)
    1 shot in 015

    And that was just Saturday night!
All is well! Nothing to see here folks (and people)! Move along!

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Sunday, February 19, 2012

Cop Shot - Will be OK

  • A police officer was shot in the hand during a scuffle this afternoon on the city's South Side, officials said.

    The was taken by police to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where he is listed in good condition, said Larry Langford, a spokesman for the Chicago Fire Department.

    Citing preliminary information, authorities said three Calumet Area gang enforcement officers were on patrol in their squad car when they responded to a call of "shots fired" near East 67th Street and South East End Avenue in the South Shore neighborhood.

    The officers saw three males run by their car, prompting two of the officers to get out and chase them on foot. The two officers were able to catch up to one of the three males, authorities said.

    As the officers struggled to detain him, they noticed he was carrying a gun in his clothing, authorities said. That individual was able to grab his gun and shoot one of the two officers in the hand.

    Meanwhile, the second officer pulled out his gun and opened fire on the shooter, wounding him three times, authorities said.

    The officer who was shot suffered a "through-and-through" wound to his hand.

Get well soon Officer. Good shooting by the partner.

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Officers Save Swimmer

Technically, he wasn't swimming though - he was freezing to death:
  • Several police officers braved two-foot waves to save a man who floundered after jumping into Lake Michigan at Belmont Harbor this afternoon to try to save his dog, police said.

    Someone called 911 just before 1 p.m. to say a man was in the water, and when officers arrived at the harbor, 3200 N. Lake Shore Drive, they found a 28-year-old man and a dog in the water, said Chicago Police Department News Affairs [...]

    The officers called for the Police Marine Unit and other rescuers to come to the scene, but they "feared the worst," and so decided to try to rescue the man themselves...
Good job guys.

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021 Final Photo

In what is becoming a nice tradition, anyone who served in some of the old buildings is being invited back for a photograph:
  • If you know of any 21st District alum's, please pass this on.

    Word I'm getting is that there will be a photo taken of the station and all present and former prairie dogs on 29 Feb. at 1300 hrs. Call the District to verify, particularly if bad weather is predicted. Please pass the word to any other lucky active and retired officers for whom you have contact information. Hope to see you there.

Good Luck.

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Teachers Lose a Big Round

  • Hundreds of tenured Chicago Public School teachers laid off for economic reasons in 2010 did not have the right to be rehired to new jobs, unlike other teachers in the state, the Illinois Supreme Court ruled Friday.

    CPS officials hailed the decision as “historically significant” and a reaffirmation of reforms that began with the 1988 Chicago School Reform Act and the discretion it gave CPS principals to hire staff.

    “The Illinois Supreme Court in this decision essentially upheld the right of [a CPS] principal to decide who is going to fill a vacancy,’’ said CPS attorney James Franczek.

    However, Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis said the opinion “amplifies Chicago’s separate and unequal practices.’’ The union disputes the 5-2 decision and is “evaluating its options,’’ Lewis said in a news release.

Rahm's assault continues full speed ahead.

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Saturday, February 18, 2012

Evaluate This!

  • An immigration agent shot his boss six times during a performance discussion in the agency's offices in a Los Angeles suburb and was shot dead by another colleague, authorities said on Friday.

    Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agent Ezequiel Garcia drew a gun and shot deputy special agent in charge Kevin Kozak six times during the Thursday afternoon altercation, Steven Martinez, assistant director of the Los Angeles field office of the FBI, told reporters.

    A third agent, who has not been identified by authorities, then fired on Garcia, 45, killing him, Martinez said.
Can you imagine CompStat meetings going this way? They'll be disarming exempts within a month before allowing them to go in for their turn in the barrel.

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Hurdles Cleared for SSI Parade

Game on?
  • The infighting that might have killed efforts to re-start the South Side Irish Parade appears to be over, after parade organizers Friday hammered out a safety plan acceptable to both sides.

    “Everything was positive,” said James “Skinny” Sheahan, the man leading the pro-parade push. “It was a great meeting. We’re all set to go.”

    Ald. Matt O’Shea (19th), who refused to support the parade until he was sure it wouldn’t be overrun with drunken ruffians, agreed.

Politics as usual by the usual suspects. 11 March is the tentative parade date.

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Again, Slow News Day

We have no idea why this made the paper either. We're looking for the angle because it doesn't fit in with the typical media slant of late:
  • A Chicago police officer shot and wounded a dog that threatened the officer behind a vacant Englewood building this morning.

    The officer responded to a report of dogs fighting near a building in the 5800 block of South Union Avenue about 8:50 a.m., said Chicago Police News Affairs [...].

    When the officer arrived, he came upon at least one dog in the back yard of the vacant building, and when the dog appeared to be a threat, the officer shot it,...

Maybe they're bucking for the animal rights people's vote.

Funny thing though - the Tribune closes comments on the "human being" spitting on the copper story, but leaves them wide open for the cop shoots dog story. Just makes you wonder.

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What We Put Up With

No idea why this made the paper, but everyone hears about it a couple of times a week:
  • A woman and a Chicago police officer were taken to a hospital after police said she spit in the officer’s eye early this morning during her arrest for reckless conduct in the Lawndale neighborhood on the West Side.

    Police responded to a disturbance near the intersection of Richmond and Fillmore streets where Jessica Williams, 25, and another woman were arguing, [...]

    As officers approached the women, Williams fled on foot into moving traffic and officers followed her and began to arrest her for reckless conduct, he said.

    As they were escorting her into the back of a squad car, Williams -- who told police she is pregnant -- spit into the face and eye of an officer.
Garbage men. Picking up the trash.

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Friday, February 17, 2012

As Predicted

Way back in October, we wrote that this was going to come back and bite McStreetlights in the ass:
  • THIS IS AN ONGOING INVESTIGATION AND IT WOULDN'T BE PRUDENT TO COMMENT ON SUCH A MATTER AT THIS TIME LEST I INTERFERE WITH THE OFFICER'S CONSTITUTIONALLY AND CONTRACTUALLY PROTECTED RIGHTS.

Lo and Behold! Guess what happened?

  • A federal judge today ordered that Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy answer questions as part of a federal lawsuit over a fatal shooting last summer by a police officer.

    Last October the Tribune wrote about the officer, Gildardo Sierra, after he shot three men – two fatally – in separate incidents in a six-month period.

    McCarthy had told the Tribune that the first two shootings were justified but that the officer should have been taken off the street and assigned to desk duty before the third shooting.
The preliminary offer put forth by the plaintiff attorney is $25 million. Hey Rahm, maybe you should look for someone you can put a muzzle on quicker?

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"No Longer Approved for Purchase" (UPDATED)

They slipped this one in under the radar:
  • The uniform items described in the specifications listed below are no longer approved for purchase as of the date listed beside them. Members who currently own/possess any item listed in this directive may continue to wear that item until it is no longer serviceable. Items listed in this directive that are no longer serviceable will be replaced by an item that meets the most current uniform specification, if applicable.

And on the list:

  • Item H. U16.0122D - Vest Carrier Embroidered Patches (Rescinded 10 February 2012 by U06-04-03

    Item I. U16.0122E - Outer Garment Embroidered Patches (Rescinded 10 February 2012 by U06-04-03
Go to the Department Directives and look up Uniform and Property U06-06 for details. It's like they want to get rid of all of J-Fled's fingerprints on the Department.

UPDATE: Numerous persons are saying this is merely a "housekeeping" issue and they are clarifying the patch design and construction. The proof is the reference to another order that was issued the same day.

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"Incredulity"

  • Chicago police and federal officials have provided some of their most candid comments to date on how they expect to handle potentially violent protests surrounding the upcoming G-8 and NATO summits here in the spring, urging the local business community to remain calm as the events approach.

    A law enforcement panel addressed downtown property managers and other professionals Wednesday night at the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago, touching on topics from moving boats from Burnham Harbor near McCormick Place to whether tear gas will be used on demonstrators.

    More than likely, it’s a ‘no’ on the tear gas, said Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, despite the likelihood of some protesters coming to town to cause trouble.

    “I’m trying to figure out how tear gas helps you control a crowd,” McCarthy said with a hint of incredulity. “It’s never really become clear to me.”

Well Gar, aside from the fact that Chicago hasn't used tear gas in 20 or more years, CS agents causes the mucous membranes to go into overdrive. Here's a scientific explanation:

  • The chemical reacts with moisture on the skin and in the eyes, causing a burning sensation and the immediate forceful and uncontrollable shutting of the eyes. Effects usually include tears streaming from the eyes, profuse coughing, exceptional nasal discharge that is full of mucus, burning in the eyes, eyelids, nose and throat areas, disorientation, dizziness and restricted breathing. It will also burn the skin where sweaty and or sunburned. In highly concentrated doses it can also induce severe coughing and vomiting. Almost all of the immediate effects wear off within an hour (such as exceptional nasal discharge and profuse coughing), although the feeling of burning and highly irritated skin may persist for hours. Affected clothing will need to be washed several times or thrown away.
So after gassing, a crowd will have trouble maintaining an aggressive posture toward authorities. Is that clear enough?

But as we stated, Chicago hasn't used CS as a riot control agent in decades. We've used OC-based agents with varying degrees of effectiveness. While use of an gas is a cause for concern due to air intakes on buildings being located near ground level, the absolute restriction of their use in a riot situation is troubling to say the least.

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Kiss of Death?

Bad choice of headlines:

And the article isn't much better:

  • Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Thursday appointed 33-year veteran Chicago firefighter Jose Santiago as Chicago’s new fire commissioner — and found an ally in the drive to wring millions of dollars in savings out of the city’s second-largest department.

    Retiring Fire Commissioner Robert Hoff said he was “deathly against” closing fire houses or reducing the minimum staffing requirement on fire apparatus — the issue that triggered the bitter 1980 firefighters strike.

  • After being appointed Thursday to succeed the retiring Hoff, Santiago drew no such line in the sand about closing firehouses.

    “That’s something we’re looking at. We have all the maps out and everything and response times. We’re sitting down and looking at every option,” said Santiago, 56.

Translation: Big changes are coming to the Fire side. Strap in and find the lube.

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Thursday, February 16, 2012

Speed Camera Noise

Does this script sound familiar?
  • Jack up City Sticker fees on a completely arbitrary baseline of vehicle weight, suddenly making thousands of families minivans on the hook for a sizable increase, based on shoddy or imagined reporting that vehicles over that certain tonnage do more damage to city streets.

That's pretty much what happened late last year. The solution?

  • OK, we'll just raise everyone's City Sticker fee.

Everyone says, "Golly, Rahm sure is wise. He spread the cost increase over the entire city." In reality, we're pretty sure that's what he wanted. Tax increase = more money for pet projects. Rahm didn't let a crisis go to waste.

Anyone see this happening again?

  • An influential alderman wants to put the brakes — sort of — on Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s plan to use red-light cameras and cameras concealed in vans to catch motorists who speed near schools and parks.

    Ald. Anthony Beale (9th), chairman of the City Council’s Transportation Committee, said there’s no reason to keep the cameras rolling around schools until 8:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9 p.m. on Friday when most of the kids are gone by late afternoon.

    “Schools are out at 3 p.m., so it shouldn’t run past 4 p.m. — even if there’s an after-school program. There’s no reason for people to be ticketed after 4 p.m. around schools,” said Beale, whose committee must approve legislation implementing the crackdown.

    “Parks are a different story because they do stay open a little longer. And parks are heavily used by the kids in the evenings.”

    Beale also wants to lower the fines and phase them in even more than state lawmakers did to ease the blow on motorists.

Anyone want to bet that Rahm doesn't "compromise" on this, too?

  • He still gets his speed cameras;
  • he still gets to claim it's "for the children," even in the face of studies showing the claim that Chicago has an outrageous pedestrian accident rate is pretty much BS;
  • he appears "reasonable" by having Beale phase in the fines and shortening the previously proposed hours of operation.
Voilà! Another crisis not going to waste. And the sheep get trimmed once again thinking Rahm is spreading the pain around.

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Suggestion

We get e-mail:
  • Hey SCC, in light of the recent arrests, maybe G-MAC should look into closing the Deuce and rolling it all into 021? We can't remember that last time 021 had a tact scandal.

Funny people.

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CFD Hoff Leaving

Must be nice to have a boss who (A) actually served in the capacity of those he supervises and (B) is popular:
  • Chicago Fire Commissioner Robert Hoff plans to announce his resignation on Thursday, the head of the firefighters union said Wednesday night.

    Chicago Firefighters Union Local 2 President Thomas Ryan announced Hoff’s planned departure at a union meeting. Ryan told fire union members that Hoff had told him “it was time to go.”

    Another source familiar with the situation called Hoff's resignation “imminent” and said it is for personal reasons, not because of any policy differences with new Mayor Rahm Emanuel.
They all say that, don't they? Especially when it's over policy differences.Link

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Aldermen Say "Shut Up!"

  • Some of the City Council’s most influential aldermen proposed a crackdown today on crowd participation at council meetings that would ban everything from signs and posters to clapping and booing in the public gallery.

    “No demonstration of approval or disapproval from members of the public shall be permitted within the City Council Chambers, including, but not limited to cheering, yelling, clapping, foot stomping, whistling, booing, or jeering, and if such demonstrations are conducted, the gallery or public seating area may be cleared,” states the proposed ordinance, which goes to the Rules Committee for a hearing.

    The changes also would prohibit “signs, placards, banners or posters” within the chambers, unless pre-approved by Mayor Rahm Emanuel or the alderman leading the meeting. The sponsors are Alds. Edward Burke, 14th, Richard Mell, 33rd, Carrie Austin, 34th, and Ray Suarez, 31st.
There's billions of dollars being misspent around here. You can't expect the aldercreatures to work under these conditions, can you?

Chicago is about to lose the lawsuit regarding taping of police involved in public interactions, a pretty clear cut First Amendment case. So now they're trying to pass another First Amendment restriction? To go along with the already illegal Second Amendment missteps? Someone want to give a Civics lesson to the Council?

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Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Technical Note


The embedded "Scribd" link with the Police Memorial Week info is a massive file - 16 pages of .pdf information. You may notice the blog loading a bit slower for a couple of days until the post is driven further down the page. We apologize for the inconvenience but feel the need to get the word to retirees is worth the time at this point.

Thanks for your patience.

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Who Knew What and When?

Bunch of interesting comments about the 002 scandal that broke this week:
  • "The karma bus rolled into the 002nd District and so now ex Commander GL and retired Lt KM do you believe me now?...PO KM and Sgt RW are under arrest for the very thing I told you they asked me to do with them 4 yrs ago...but my punishment for telling was removal from tact and sent to a beat car...well for that Commammander GL I THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART...BTW..I've never been AFRAID to do my job...I've never had the desire to go to prison..."

  • "Watts and his team from Housing which included Mohammed were dirty over 10 years ago. I'm surprised it took this long for them to get taken down. And I'm really surprised that more of his team didn't get caught up in this indictment....."

  • "Was no secret in housing that watts team was dirty. F-them"
It certainly seems that a number of people attempted to bring this to light but were shut down by various levels of the Department. We all know corrupt cops make everyone look bad, but when there's no one willing to believe (or acknowledge) the whistle-blowers and there seems to be active collusion among the white shirts and gold stars to silence or cover for the misbehavior, then where does that leave the honest guys and gals?

We all know what happened after the last Second District scandal.

UPDATE: Channel 5 says it's going to get bigger.

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Police Memorial Week

As you should be aware, Police Memorial Week falls right in the middle of G8 and NATO conferences. With the cancellations of days off imminent and furloughs forbidden, not a single active Chicago Police officer will be in Washington DC this year for the Memorial. Chicago has always been well represented. In an effort to maintain some representation there, retired Sgt. Al Piantkowski is gathering fellow retirees to represent Chicago:

DC Memorial Information

Spread the word among the retirees or soon to be retired. Hopefully, the Chicago presence can be restored in 2013, supplemented by the retirees who cover our absence this year.

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Most Corrupt? Duh!

  • A former Chicago alderman turned political science professor/corruption fighter has found that Chicago is the most corrupt city in the country.

    He cites data from the U.S. Department of Justice to prove his case. And, he says, Illinois is third-most corrupt state in the country.

    University of Illinois professor Dick Simpson estimates the cost of corruption at $500 million.

Only $500 million? That was about the size of the Chicago budget deficit last year, wasn't it?

Now add in Cook County and Illinois corruption in general and you can see why this entire section of the Midwest is circling the drain.

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Hey Look! Face Shields

  • Chicago Police officers facing off against protesters during the NATO and G-8 Summits will be equipped with new face shields that fit comfortably over gas masks and include a seal to prevent officers from being blinded by liquids thrown at them.

    Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s administration has awarded a $193,461 emergency contract to Colorado-based Super Seer Corp. for the purchase of 3,057 new and improved shields to be used by officers on the front lines during the May 19-21 summits at McCormick Place.

    The contract marks the first use of the sweeping power granted to Emanuel to purchase goods and services for the summits — without City Council approval or competitive bidding — provided those items cannot be purchased under existing contracts.

Wait a second. Only 3,057? What about the other 8,943 officers? Or does City Hall know something they aren't telling the rest of us?

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Shortshanks Redux

  • Mayor Rahm Emanuel said Tuesday that he didn't direct a political consulting firm with close ties to him to organize faith and community groups in support of his education agenda, nor was he aware the company was doing so.

    The mayor’s comments followed a Monday Tribune report that Resolute Consulting has given money and organizational help to groups that support Emanuel’s attempts to lengthen the school day, bolster charter schools and close under-performing schools. Resolute is run by Greg Goldner, Emanuel’s 2002 congressional campaign manager who also runs a political fund aligned with Emanuel’s interests.

    Asked Tuesday if he knew about Goldner’s involvement or directed him to help pastors with grass-roots work to bolster his schools agenda, Emanuel said “the answer is no.”
So on one hand, we're supposed to believe that Rahm is an evil genius, never letting a crisis go to waste, the brains behind some of Clinton's successes and the driving force behind the rise of Obama.

On the other hand, he has no freaking idea that someone who actually ran one of his political campaigns is spearheading a "grassroots" movement to significantly change the school day and by design, alter the work rules for the teachers union.

Can't you just smell the bullshit? It smells like....Richie Daley.

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Generating Money

  • A Chicago charter school franchise often touted by Mayor Rahm Emanuel has pocketed some $387,000 in fees over three years by issuing demerits for “minor infractions” ranging from not sitting up straight to openly carrying “flaming hot” chips, parents and students charged Monday.

    The list of forbidden conduct at the Noble Street Charter Network is “as long as my arm’’ but adds up to a “dehumanizing discipline system that looks a lot more like a reform school than a college prep,’’ Julie Woestehoff of Parents United for Responsible Education charged at a news conference Monday.

    At Noble Street schools, four demerits within two weeks triggers a three-hour detention costing $5. More than 12 detentions lands students in a behavior modification class costing $140.

    Twenty-five to 36 detentions in one school year: two discipline classes, carrying a $280 pricetag. More than 36 detentions? Kids have to repeat the grade.

One school of thought is that a highly structured environment lends itself to better learning. The trouble is that is isn't the kids paying the fines/fees.

But fining people for untied shoelaces, droopy pants, not sitting up straight? Chicago might actually end up running a budget surplus within five years and fully funding the pension inside of ten.

It's worth a shot, right?

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Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Chilling Video

Watch the prisoner's hands:



What the hell did he get off of that necklace? It seems to have gone from a diamond shape to a triangle. A key? A key and a blade? And he's really going with the mouth, playing to the cameras and pretty much telling them he's about to escape and do some damage.

Sharpshooters killed him later, but not before he took the life of a Mobile, Alabama officer, the one driving the car in the video.

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History Repeats in 002

  • Two Chicago police officers were arrested on federal theft charges after they allegedly stole $5,200 from a man they believed was a drug courier but who in fact was secretly cooperating with federal authorities.

    According to the charges unsealed today, federal agents secretly videotaped the theft as Officer Kallatt Mohammed, driving in his personal car, took the cash from the informant last November in the 2700 block of South Vernon Avenue.

    The second officer, Sgt. Ronald Watts, later met with the informant and handed him $400 for tipping the officers off to his courier assignment.
So who is going to be the multiple "merit" promoted individual from this 002 District scandal like CW was how many years ago?

And this part is just priceless:

  • Both are assigned to the Wentworth District tactical unit. Watts is also the financial secretary for the Chicago Police Sergeants’ union.
Someone better tell the sergeants to count all the money they had left over from the last indicted board member and see if it checks out.

UPDATE: Language altered slightly so as not to paint with so broad a brush.

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