Saturday, November 30, 2013

Hopefully, True

  • In the early hours of Thanksgiving morning, three Bronx thugs who were out for a game of “Knock Out” with what they thought was an unsuspecting victim, a white male in his late fifties to early sixties, got more than they bargained for.

    The three men, all in their early twenties, were trailing the man down Morris Park Avenue, heading toward Williams Bridge Road when their prey veered into an alley way. They followed him into the alley and around a sharp, dark bend, only to find the barrel of a .45 magnum waiting on them. Two of them men were shot in the foot and the third was pistol whipped. Authorities nearby responded to 911 calls reporting the gunfire and called for ambulances. The men were taken to nearby Calvary Hospital where they were treated and released.

    The men were not charged, but authorities are asking anyone who has any information on the individual who shot two of the men and pistol whipped the third to come forward. He is described as a white male, approximately late fifties to early sixties. He is approximately 5’10″ and 165 pounds.

    Police fear a vigilante may be on the loose, intentionally inviting wayward youth into playing the new “knock out” game for the intent purposes of maiming, or perhaps even killing them.
And the problem with this is.....what exactly?

If idiots want to play a "game" that has resulted in the deaths of seven or more people (depending on who's reports you believe), then they take their chances with running into someone playing an entirely different game. The mainstream media, taking their lead from the New York Times and other left leaning outlets, have declared this isn't a "big deal" and have unilaterally embargoed any mention of the "game" and the aspects of the "game."

So if it isn't a big deal when they ambush victims completely unaware, then we really don't see how it's a big deal when they jump someone who is aware, is armed, and is willing to defend themselves.

Now hopefully, this story turns out to be true. If not, it will be somewhere soon.


Speaking of Frauds...

Someone brought this to our attention following the spate of mortgage fraud scandals currently coming to the fore. We wrote about it over three years ago:
  • Jeffrey Duerwachter made $413,000 in one day last year by buying and selling the Chicago Defender building.

    But he did even better investing, making a $413,000 profit by buying and immediately reselling a historic South Loop building that once housed the Chicago Defender, the city's biggest African-American newspaper. And he did it all in one day -- June 8. First, Duerwachter paid $3.72 million for the building and a nearby vacant lot Then, Duerwachter resold the building and lot for $4.1 million to a company owned by Matthew A. O'Malley, a politically connected Chicago restaurant owner who had been negotiating to buy the property from Stratievsky.

    O'Malley bought the property with three loans -- including $1 million in city pension funds managed by DV Urban Realty Partners, a company co-owned by Mayor Daley's nephew, Robert Vanecko, and one of Daley's key African-American allies, Allison S. Davis. This was one of the investments Davis and Vanecko made after their newly created company was hired to manage $68 million for five pension funds for city workers, police officers, Chicago teachers and CTA workers.
Does the pension fund still own the Defender Building? Was everything on the up-and-up when this deal.....oh, who are we kidding? Nothing was on the up-and-up here. Flipping a $4 million building in one day with pension money from five city pensions that are so underfunded that Rahm is going to try to break them all in the next few days? Please.

But no one got charged criminally, sued civilly or answered to any sort of investigation that we recall. Did we miss it?

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Friday, November 29, 2013

St. Baldricks - Save the Date

It might be a bit early to start growing out the hair, but time enough to plan a last haircut before letting it grow out for next year.
  • Friday 14 March 2014 - locations to be announced
Keep an eye out for posters and check back here for information as it becomes available.


Guess What Time It Is?

  • Chicago's winter overnight parking ban goes into effect Sunday morning, December 1.

    Last year just over 300 vehicles were towed the first day of enforcement.

    The parking ban remains in effect until April 1.

    The restriction is in effect between 3 and 7 a.m. on main streets, even if there is no snow.

    Violation fees include a $150-dollar towing fee and a $60 ticket.
Rahm's going to have every tow truck he can lay his hands on cruising the streets on Saturday night. Make sure you aren't parked at dinner or a tavern and come out to find no car.


More Mortgage Fraud?

A whole bunch of people are looking at time over this. Now comes word of another mortgage scandal brewing:
  • A Chicago Police officer was ordered held in lieu of $25,000 bond Thursday after he was charged in a mortgage-fraud scheme that netted nearly $750,000.

    Darius Thompson, 32, of Chicago, was charged with multiple counts of felony theft, loan fraud, money-laundering, wire fraud and forgery for his alleged role in a plot to falsify mortgage applications during his previous employment as a loan processor and originator.

    Prosecutors claim Thompson’s co-defendant, Terrence Reese, filled out loan applications for buyers with inaccurate jobs, salaries and assets and then gave them to Thompson to submit while he worked at First Star Funding in Olympia Fields.

    Reese allegedly would then get fraudulent liens against the properties and pay Thompson a kickback. Prosecutors claim losses from the loans, filed on three different occasions in 2010 and 2011, are $749,162, with Thompson’s portion $42,717.

    Thompson, a probationary officer working out of the 5th District, was arrested Wednesday at CPD Headquarters at 3510 S. Michigan Ave.
So this is one of those things where actions prior to becoming the police are going to come back and haunt the rest of us? Though he barely has 3 minutes on the job and hasn't even finished probation, he's already labeled a "Chicago Police officer" and will carry that label through trial, separation, and if convicted, he'll be "convicted Chicago cop" at sentencing. How wonderful.


Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

Best wishes to all on this holiday.

And remember all those at work today and serving overseas who cannot be with their families today.

Open post (and probably delayed comments).


County Parking Exemption

See paragraph 7 (click for a larger image):

We'll see - thanks to the reader sending it over.


Here Comes "Reform"

A deal has been reached for state pensions, the lions share of Illinois' problems:
  • After years of lurches and stops, House and Senate leaders finally struck a landmark pension-reform accord Wednesday that ultimately could shave $160 billion from the state’s future pension liabilities and lift Illinois from its status as the least creditworthy state in the country.

    But the deal expected to be voted on next week in Springfield sets up a hostile legislative confrontation with public-employee unions that claim the agreement is unconstitutional.

    It also runs headlong into the crosswinds of the 2014 gubernatorial campaign, In which Gov. Pat Quinn is poised to grab a huge legislative prize, and one of his top GOP rivals — private equity investor Bruce Rauner — is said to be trying to tube the plan through back-channels.

    A series of secret, closed-door meetings involving the legislative leaders that date back to October culminated Wednesday with a deal to reel in annual, cost-of-living increases current and future state retirees get, lower pension contributions from existing employees and hike retirement ages.
Great - secret, closed door meetings that exclude representatives of the pensioners can only mean fantastic deals are afoot to enrich lawyers suing on Constitutional grounds.

Crain's Chicago Business has coverage here.

Tribune here.

This doesn't directly affect Police pensions, but you know that Rahm is going to use it as a "framework" for things to come.


Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Show Us the Money

  • A proposal to hire more police officers rather than pay up to $100 million in overtime died in the Budget Committee Monday.

    The measure, which would have diverted $25 million in the 2014 city budget to hire at least 200 and as many as 500 more officers, was tabled under a motion by Ald. James Balcer (11th), head of the Public Safety Committee.

  • Budget Director Alexandra Holt testified Monday that, while a rookie officer has a salary of $43,000, total first-year costs of hiring that officer were $76,000.

    "The costs begin to accumulate quite quickly," Holt added, with police salary topping $100,000 within four years.
Really? Someone has been shorting us then. Let's get out the calculators. We're owed at least a quarter million at those rates. Anyone else want to hop on this one?


    Sgt. Test Rumor

    This would be laughable if true:
    • Passing score for part I of Sgt exam will be 43%.

      Good luck to those who took the exam. (sarcasm)

      Inside 35th street
    We'd find this humorous...if it wasn't a fact that in the last Lieutenants exam, 100% of the participants passed Part One. And we will guarantee that whomever scored dead last on that test, got promoted within the first two classes.

    It's the Chicago way.


    Paying for Parking?

    Word is that gates are being installed at 26/Cal so you have to pay for parking.

    Any word on off-duty parking? On duty? Jurors? County is only paying jurors like $20 (give or take) for service - now they're going to take part of even that paltry sum?


    Boo Hoo - Prisoners Cold

    Anyone want to bet against the possibility of someone filing a suit over this?
    • Part of the Cook County Jail has been without heat for days.

      CBS 2 [...] reports one tier in Division 4 – the women’s division – lost heat on Saturday, so the 10 inmates housed there were moved to other areas of the jail.

      The night the heat went out on that tier, the outside temperature dropped to as low as 12 degrees in Chicago.

      According to the Cook County Sheriff’s office, the 10 inmates on the tier were given extra blankets right away, after the heating unit malfunctioned. The tier was shut down and those inmates were moved to other tiers with heat, while county engineers worked on repairing the broken heating unit.
    Boo hoo hoo. Poor chilly prisoners. Dart should drop the inside temps to the mid 50's anyway to cut down on costs, reduce bacteria growth and make the jail a place people don't want to return to - kind of like Sheriff Joe does in Arizona, but adapted for northern climates.


    Bye Bye Beavers

    • Former Cook County Commissioner William Beavers must report to federal prison on Monday, a judge has ruled, rejecting Beavers plea to delay his six-month tax fraud sentence while his appeal is heard.

      Beavers, 78, was convicted in March of cheating on his taxes for failing to declare how he’d used his political campaign fund to bankroll heavy gambling losses.

      His lawyers wanted U.S. District Judge James Zagel to delay his reporting date while his appeal is heard, but Zagel — who handed Beavers the six-month sentence in September — on Tuesday ruled that the appeal does not raise “a substantial question of law” nor is it likely to result in success.
    How come he isn't identified as "former aldercreature"? Or "former Officer"? You know the media does it for everyone else. And it's only 6 months - he'll be out in plenty of time to gamble at the new Chicago casino.


    Tuesday, November 26, 2013

    Blatant Media Slant Continues

    The Tribune is once again playing politics with Police Department issues.

    The article linked at the bottom of today's posts has been altered beyond recognition. The last half-a-dozen paragraphs which told the story of the Officer's efforts to reach out to the family, the conversation they had, the explanation and regret he expressed over the mistake, have all disappeared from the story completely.

    Instead, they are now quoting the convicted felon who allegedly had the gun that allegedly disappeared following the confrontation.

    We don't know about you, but this altering of the narrative by the media is a giant red flag that screams "political prosecution" to us. We don't see anything wrong about covering the fact that the detective has expressed regret and contrition, but the media eliminating all mention of this when it was featured so prominently not even 10 hours ago? Someone got a phone call.

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    Springfield Antics Again

    Now that the legislature has disposed of the pressing social issue of our time that affects maybe 2-or-3% of the population, pension stuff is on the front burner again:
    • Illinois House lawmakers were told Monday to return Dec. 3 to Springfield, where they would be in position if legislative leaders reach a compromise on overhauling the state's public employee pension system.

      There have been reports of progress but no deal in the ongoing pension talks, and Senate leaders have tentatively scheduled a return Dec. 3-4 should a pension compromise be reached.

      There was no mention of what House lawmakers would do in the letter sent by Speaker Michael Madigan's chief of staff, who told members to prepare for a one-day session next Tuesday.
    There will be a load of stuff coming through all sorts of media outlets, social media sites, official union sites and other sites like this one. Keep a sharp eye out for info.


    VRI Expanding - The Second Hint

    • Mayor Rahm Emanuel on Monday shaved a quarter off his 75-cents-a-pack cigarette tax hike to appease black aldermen concerned about street corner sales of loose cigarettes, but buried a $25 million plan to hire hundreds of additional police officers instead of relying so heavily on overtime.
    The fifty-cent a pack raise will fuel another surge in black market sales of untaxed cigarettes. And the overtime costs will continue to rise:
    • At a meeting Monday, the Budget Committee buried a $25 million amendment that would have substituted the hiring of hundreds of additional officers for police overtime expected to top $93 million this year and $75 million in 2014.

      At one point, Austin inadvertently called for a voice vote on the amendment and aldermen approved it on a voice vote.

      Only after Ald. Jim Balcer (11th) caught the mistake did Austin call the roll on a motion to table the police hiring plan, instead of approving it. The vote was 18-to-4. No votes were cast by Aldermen Leslie Hairston (5th), Ricardo Munoz (22nd) and Scott Waguespack (32nd), Michael Chandler (24th).

      Prior to the corrected vote, Budget Director Alex Holt argued that $25 million was only enough to hire “a little over 200” new officers and that the city could buy nearly 116,000 additional “police man hours” with overtime, after pension and health benefits are factored in.

      Ald. John Arena (45th) didn’t buy it.

      “I agree with her just on a straight, can you get in more man hours? But what’s the quality of those man hours?” Arena said.
    Six-of-one, half-a-dozen of the other. If the purpose is high-visibility patrol, it's a win for man-hours on the street. If it's numbers driven, well, they're getting a steady flow of people who want to be eligible for OT bringing in activity who wouldn't otherwise. At some point though, we imagine someone is going to kick UP the the numbers to qualify for overtime. What's stopping them from doubling the Parkers, Movers, Contact Cards, whatever generates the numbers (or revenue) to get a piece of the pie? Nothing, nothing at all.


    VRI Expanding - The First Hint

    • U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder promised extra federal cash to fight the gun violence plaguing Chicago’s streets Monday, but offered no specifics about how much.

      Holder — speaking at a public court ceremony to welcome incoming U.S. Attorney Zach Fardon — said the Justice Department would take “significant steps” including funding extra Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents who will focus on cutting off the supply of “illegal guns that too often wind up in the hands of gang members and other violent criminals.”
    A plan to go after illegal guns? That's new.

    No specifics offered by Holder? That's par for the course.
    • U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., quickly claimed credit for the cash injection, which will come from funds seized from drug dealers as a way to get around the federal sequester.

      But like Holder, neither Kirk nor U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill. — both among a crowd of political and legal big cheeses attending Monday’s ceremony — could say how much cash or how many agents were at stake.

      And law enforcement officials familiar with ATF staffing levels in Chicago further dampened expectations when they told the Sun-Times they don’t know of any plans to hire a lot of new ATF agents here.
    That means OT for someone. A lot of someones.


    Detective Indicted

    It would seem that the heat from parolees committing crime and boot camp being a failure is getting to the County people, so they have Anita indict a cop for a highly questionable set of circumstances:
    • For the first time in more than 15 years, a Chicago police officer was criminally charged Monday in a fatal, off-duty shooting because Cook County prosecutors said he acted recklessly, opening fire over his left shoulder from inside his car into an alley occupied by at least four people. 
    Part of the reasoning behind the indictment is that no gun was found.

    Really? We can name a few dozen instances where guns were used in crimes, then got legs and walked away in the hands or pockets of passersby on the street. Usually, someone who is about to be apprehended ditches incriminating evidence. The chances of that evidence, be it dope, a gun, burglary proceeds, an iPhone, disappearing are better than average depending on the number of people in the immediate vicinity versus the number of cops being on scene.

    By the same token, does anyone think it's odd that if the police are running around, planting guns on every minority on the west and south sides, that no gun "turned up" on scene? If we're so good at putting guns on people, why didn't one turn up here? Are we suddenly incompetent at something we've been so good at for thirty or forty or more years? All those guns in our squad car trunks and we couldn't spare a single one to save a cop?

    Sounds like someone wants to have their cake and eat it too.

    (we make no judgement on the circumstances of the night in question. that's out of any of our hands now and in the courts. posts accusing us of taking sides or other nonsense will be deleted as usual. we don't know the circumstances and neither does any one else. if you read the linked article, the detective seems genuinely remorseful and reached out to the deceased's family members, expressing regret and sympathy for the events. it's up to them to accept or decline his explanations.)


    Monday, November 25, 2013

    Cop Punched, Cop Kicked, Cop Shot

    Chicago, Chicago and Harvey (the officer will be okay):
    • An Old Town man was ordered held in lieu of $10,000 bail Sunday after he allegedly punched a police officer in the face after being kicked out of a Streeterville bar Friday night.

      Paul E. Leimkuehler, 25, of the 400 block of West North Avenue, faces felony aggravated battery of a peace officer and resisting arrest charges in connection to the incident, which happened outside the Public House bar at 400 North State Street, according to Cook County Bond Court records.
    And another drunk:
    • An Hermosa neighborhood man was ordered held in lieu of $50,000 bail Sunday after he allegedly kicked a police officer in the groin and later urinated in a police station interview room.

      Daniel J. Pena, 29, of the 4100 block of West Dickens Avenue, was arrested early Saturday and charged with felony aggravated battery of a peace officer and resisting arrest, as well as a misdemeanor battery charge, according to court records.
    • A Harvey police officer was hospitalized with non-life threatening wounds after being shot as he and other officers were responding to a robbery at a business in the south suburb, officials said.

      The shooting happened at 5:57 p.m. at a business at 159th and Wood Streets in the suburb, according to press release issued by Harvey Mayor Eric Kellogg.

      After several officers arrived to the scene of the robbery, they encountered a male suspect who "immediately began shooting at the first officer on the scene," according to the statement.
    Best wishes to the wounded Officer.


    It Was Cold, Right?

    • Two men were killed and 12 other people were wounded in shootings throughout the city since Friday afternoon.
    Coldest nights of the season so far, but nothing seems to slow the shooting count. Well done Criminal Element!


    Farm Detroit

    • Bankrupt and hemorrhaging population, the city of Detroit is banking on greener pastures to lead its rebirth.

      A private company is snapping up 150 acres on the Motor City's East End -- property where more than 1,000 homes once formed a gritty neighborhood -- and turning it into what is being billed as the world's largest urban farm. Hantz Woodlands plans to start by planting trees, but hopes to raise crops and even livestock in the future, right in the midst of the once-proud city.
    If it works there, start a "farm Englewood" movement. With Whole Foods nearby, they might even cut down on transport costs and who knows - honest jobs, honest labor. Oh who are we kidding, the illegals will be there in a heartbeat.


      Sunday, November 24, 2013

      Another Arrest in Lewis Killing

      • The third man charged in the 2011 slaying of Chicago Police Officer Clifton Lewis shot Lewis after he announced he was a police officer when two gunmen entered the Austin convenience store where Lewis was working the night he died, prosecutors said today.

        Alexander Villa, 25, has been charged with first-degree murder of a peace officer, aggravated battery and armed robbery with a firearm in the slaying of Lewis on Dec. 29, 2011. In a bond hearing midday Saturday, Cook County Criminal Court Judge Israel Desierto ordered Villa held without bail.

        Family members of Lewis in court today wept during the hearing.
      Almost two years of methodical and painstaking work. Well done to all involved.


        Boot Camp "Less Effective"

        The timing of this study couldn't have been much better - of course, the article was written by Frank Main, the same writer who covered the judges sending felons to boot camp in violation of state statute:
        • Gun offenders sentenced to boot camp are more likely to be rearrested than those sent to prison, a new analysis suggests.

          The findings come two months after a mass shooting at a South Side park raised questions about why one of the suspects was sent to boot camp instead of prison for an earlier gun-possession conviction.
        The answer to that question is simple - if you reward (or fail to punish) bad behavior, you get more of it. Lots more of it in most cases. Boot camp isn't punishment...or rather, it's not punishment enough.

        Study after study after study confirms it. It's not only observable in the criminal justice system, but in economic models, too. And social. If you don't think the increases in "wilding" along with the knock-out game aren't directly related to the lack of tangible punishment, then you're out-of-touch.


          Bears in St. Louis

          And underdogs by a point-and-a-half.

          Playoff implications today.

          Open post in the meantime.


          Saturday, November 23, 2013

          Training Lab Named for Gordon

          • Chicago police have honored one of their fallen colleagues in a most appropriate way.

            WBBM Newsradio [...] reports the Chicago Police Academy training lab, where recruits learn how to administer Breathalyzer tests, has been named after Officer Michael P. Gordon, who died when his squad car was hit by a drunk driver in August 2004.

            Gordon’s father, a retired cop who spent 30 years on the force in Riverside, said his son also served in the Army, in Bosnia and Korea, only to be killed by a drunk driver while on patrol in Chicago.
          A fitting tribute to train officers to detect and arrest that which denied us the service of Officer Gordon. RIP Officer.


          Oops, and a BIG Oops

          • The trouble started when officers tried to pull Darnell Grandison over for not wearing a seat belt.  It ended with him stealing a squad car and getting shot at by police, authorities say.

            Grandison, 28, was driving a Camry through the Englewood neighborhood around 9:30 a.m. Monday when the officers tried stopping him, according to a police report. He sped away and then drove toward a police car responding to the scene, the report said.

            He finally pulled over in the 7200 block of South Union Street and got out, police said. Officers tried to take him into custody but Grandison "took control" of a squad car and "drove toward" an officer, according to the police report.

            The officer moved out of the way and officers began chasing Grandison, police said. He ditched the police car in the 7200 block of South Lowe Avenue and ran off, police said. Officers saw him "crouching" and turn toward police with a "small silvery object in his right hand," police said. An officer fired but missed, the report said.
          The car was hot by the way.

          And a giant "Oops:"
          • A Chicago Police lieutenant resigned Friday after he was charged by federal prosecutors with participating in a mortgage fraud scheme involving a motley crew of characters with links to several high-profile crimes.

            Erroll Davis — a 52-year-old former member of the Chicago Police’s Marine Unit — is accused of teaming up with bank owner Robert Michael to help disgraced former Country Club Hills Police Chief Regina Evans fraudulently obtain a $650,000 loan.
          Nice job Erroll. And that's not all - this whole thing is tied into the Regina Evans scandal, the former CPD "meri-clout-orious" lieutenant who made chief of Country Club Hills AND one of the former bank owners who ran this mortgage fraud lists himself as a "former Chicago Police sergeant."

          Anyone who had connections to this group of disreputable assholes ought to be sweating that their name is going to come out as these rats make deals to spare themselves extensive prison time.


          Another Expressway Shooting

          Two wounded in what's fast becoming a regular shooting gallery after the bars close:
          • The Illinois state police are investigating a shooting early this morning near the interchange between the Eisenhower and Kennedy expressways, authorities said.

            The driver of a vehicle near the expressway alerted police officers that someone, possibly two people, had been shot, Chicago police said, citing preliminary information. A man was shot in the leg and taken to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where his condition had been stabilized, according to Chicago Police.

            Police News Affairs referred calls to State Police.
          And guess what? The wounded were "uncooperative" with the troopers, too. Imagine that.

          Which club are all these assholes coming out of? Because this is about the third shooting in ten days that we can recall.


          New York Madness

          With a couple high ranking vacancies in the NYPD, you had to know the rumor mill was going to be in full swing this week. Word is that McJerseyShore headed east to see what's up at his old stomping grounds, hence the delay in "merit" interviews for the impending class of sergeants. We started checking around our regular haunts and found this article that made us question why anyone would want to head up the NYPD after the new mayor gets in:
          • Forget Ray Kelly, Bill de Blasio is getting his policing advice from the real experts — hardened criminals.

            A group of 50 ex-cons, junkies and chronic vagrants gathered at a Manhattan “Think Tank” Thursday to describe what they thought the NYPD should be doing to make their lives easier.

            The felonious forum outlined a clear “get-soft-on-crime” vision.

            “I like the idea of ending stop and frisk. That was the first thing that was totally there for me,” opined Mikell Green-Grand, a 49-year-old former jailbird who has convictions for grand larceny and identity theft.

            Arthur Castillo, 38 — who has been convicted for possessing stolen property and assault — said he would be much obliged if the cops just left him alone to do his thing.

            “Cops won’t leave us alone!” he said. “Newly released prisoners are watched by the police and a lot of us don’t feel we have an opportunity to readapt to normal life because we are treated as criminals even though we are free.”

            The event, which was held in Morningside Heights, was hosted by an advisory group called Talking Transitions, run by liberal billionaire investment magnate George Soros.
          Ah yes, George Soros - "liberal" is a charitable description. And the new mayor was a big supporter of the Sandinistas back in the day. Rough years ahead for New York and the NYPD.


          Tax Hike!

          • The Chicago Park District plans to raise property taxes as part of a 2014 budget that would add swimming classes, summer Night Out in the Park events and sports programs, the agency announced late Friday.

            Parks Superintendent Michael Kelly is recommending a $3.6 million property tax increase, according to a district news release. The Park District announced the proposed budget at 5 p.m. Friday, a time when many people are focused on the weekend and public agencies often release bad news.

            The Park District property tax increase, which still needs to be approved by the park board, is the latest example of Mayor Rahm Emanuel turning to a tax increase at a city agency under his control after publicizing investments and cost savings there throughout the year.
          And why exactly do we need "summer Night Out in the Park" events anyway? Doesn't that seem to attract rifle fire and 13 wounded at a time? Aren't parks closed after a certain hour? Don't the buildings close? If they're open, how many people have to be on-duty there - at least one attendant and maybe even a building engineer/janitor on site. And didn't the Department start some sort of Park District Special Employment at ten of these parks?

          Couldn't they cut hours and some of these nonsense "events" to save money?


          Friday, November 22, 2013

          Judges Ignore the Law

          • Denzel Simons, 19, a first-time felon, stood before Cook County Circuit Judge Diane Cannon facing six to 30 years in prison for robbing a man at his Southwest Side home.

            There was no way he was supposed to get boot camp — a break reserved for young, nonviolent offenders. His victim was against it. He’d lost his wallet, with $290 inside, and took a beating from Simons’ partner in crime, who pistol-whipped him.

            What’s more, Illinois law explicitly ruled out a boot camp sentence. Boot camp or probation aren’t options for armed robbers like Simons. It’s too serious of a crime.

            But in a decision repeated again and again in recent years by Cook County judges, Cannon ignored the law. She gave Simons boot camp anyway.
          Can you guess what happened?
          • Less than two years after he was sent to the four-month boot camp program, Simons was charged with murdering Kermit Delashment II, a 21-year-old college student with big dreams.

            Delashment’s death was the 500th killing of 2008 in Chicago.
          And guess what the judge's reply was when confronted with the fact that a criminal she was required to send to prison was instead out committing murder?
          • In an interview, the judge acknowledged: “I am sure I have given sentences that were not the letter of the law.”

            “You got me,” she said.
          Wow. Just wow. A dead man on her watch, under her gavel and all she can say is "You got me." Not only that, she gave a dozen other robbers the same break, consciously disregarding the sentencing requirements in Illinois law.

          Here's the other judges pointed out in Frank Main's article:
          • The other judges at the time who sent defendants to boot camp for armed robbery were Evelyn Clay, Lon Shultz and Marcus Salone. None returned calls seeking comment.

            Chief Cook County Judge Timothy Evans would not comment.
          There are hundreds of these cases where judges are disregarding sentencing requirements for forcible felonies and sending ineligible felons to boot camp. Hundreds. And they're out there committing crimes to this very day.

          Nice job Frank Main - good to see you can actually do the job when the spirit moves you. Now how about something on the parolees committing robberies, rapes and murders and the complete failure of the Illinois justice system that is needlessly abetting the killing and maiming innocents?


          Mayor MVP

          • The Cubs got the go-ahead Thursday to take another ten feet of street and sidewalk — and sell advertising on a “branding arch” over Clark Street — over the objections of residents who live around 99-year-old Wrigley Field.

            Area residents were so angry about the Chicago Plan Commission’s decision to enlarge the stadium footprint at their expense to accommodate wider aisles, more concessions and a larger Budweiser deck, they branded Mayor Rahm Emanuel the team’s “most valuable player” for 2013.
          Here's the "police-y" part of the article that caught our eye:
          • “It is shocking to know the mayor is so willing to give billionaire owners of the Cubs public land so they can increase their profit margins while the residents of the 19th District are told there isn’t enough money to hire more police to replace the nearly 70 officers we’ve lost in the last 18 months....
          Didn't Rahm and the aldercreatures promise on a stack of bibles that residents of the combined 019 and 023 Districts wouldn't suffer loss of police coverage or even a single officer? And yet here is an allegation that 70 cops have been lost. And we can count on one hand the number of openings for all of 2013.

          Could it be that they lied? We mean, Obama has been lying his ass off for 5 years and the lies are just coming to light now, and Rahm is part of the same political structure, so maybe he has the same ingrained habits? Of course, the dead tree media won't point any of this out in any meaningful way that might damage the Chicago political brand.



          • A man was found dead today inside a public restroom at the Englewood District police station on the  South Side.

            Someone walked into the restroom of the station at 1438 W. 63rd St. around 6:30 a.m. and found the man unresponsive, according to Police News Affairs [...].

            The man was pronounced dead at the scene. [News Affairs] said there was no visible sign of trauma.
          Junkie? Medical emergency? Just how often do they check those bathrooms? Is it every 15 minutes like the lock-up? Maybe it should be. At least it wasn't Leo's personal shitter.


          Thursday, November 21, 2013

          Parolee Again

          There's a Pulitzer Prize in here somewhere, but investigative journalism is dead in this town - dead, dead, dead:
          • A man on parole in three 2011 cellphone thefts on the Near North Side has been charged with sexually assaulting a woman over the summer at a store blocks away from where the thefts took place, authorities said.

            Michael Roberson, 30, has been charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault and kidnapping using deceit in the Aug. 6 attack at a store near Illinois and State streets.

            Roberson, of the 7900 block of South Ingleside Avenue, is on parole in the November 2011 thefts and was taken back into custody this month, according to Illinois Department of Corrections records. He also was wanted for jumping bail in two theft cases from this spring, records show.
          And there's more!
          • In the 2011 thefts, Roberson was arrested Nov. 21 after a woman recognized him as someone who had stolen her iPhone about an hour earlier from a restaurant near Dearborn and Division streets. Roberson was found to have two more stolen iPhones, and was sentenced to two years in prison after pleading guilty in the thefts, according to police and court records.

            At the time of the Near North attack this summer, Roberson was free on bond in three cases from May and early June, committed after he was released from prison on May 9, court and prison records show.
          Wait a second - we thought that a condition of bond, you weren't supposed to commit any more crimes? So if police charged him properly (which if they ran his name, they had to) then the Violation of Bail Bond charge should have remanded him to County to see a judge, who still let him out, not once, but twice, in under 60 days.

          And being arrested is a slam-dunk would seem to be a violation of parole, wouldn't it? But the IDOC most likely refused to issue the hold, so guess who was out, free as a bird, to rape and rob?

          We keep putting them in jail, then Cook County and Illinois keep putting 'em back on the streets.


          Concealed Carry Training

          Has anyone seen how they're going to train 10,000 cops in Chicago sometime? The law takes effect on 01 January 2014, but given the bureaucratic delays and built-in-slow-pace of processing expected, the permits will be delayed until April at the earliest.

          So, the training is on the schedule for....when?
          • When Illinois residents begin carrying concealed handguns legally next year, law enforcement officers will have to be ready for a "sea change" in how they conduct traffic and street stops, officials said Wednesday as they announced a new police training program they hope will help prevent potentially fatal mistakes.

            Illinois, the last state to allow concealed carry, is expected to begin issuing permits in April under a law that goes into effect on the first of the year. Traffic stops already are among the most dangerous activities for officers, and throwing newly legalized handguns into the mix could have tragic consequences, officials said.

            "As soon as you see someone move (and) they have a gun, all of a sudden things get really crazy in a hurry," Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart told reporters at a news conference. "What we're attempting to do is get out in front of this."
          Because Dart made so many traffic stops in his career. In fact, he makes 10 or 20 a day now just to keep in practice, right? And he can't wait to paint those who chose to exercise their Right as out-of-control and crazy. And the head of the Illinois Law Enforcement Training and Standards Board isn't helping much:
          • "We want to stress that these could be law-abiding citizens who are now carrying these weapons and that the initial reaction of the law enforcement officer must be a little more savvy in approaching someone so that the public itself is treated with respect," [Kevin] McClain said.

            McClain said there could be more arrests for disorderly conduct or obstruction for citizens who don't cooperate.

            "Police officers are going to have to show a lot of restraint," he said. "You might get people that are carrying the weapon legally that get obnoxious with a law enforcement officer."
          Um, aren't we supposed to treat the public with respect anyway? And restraint? For the most part, being obnoxious with the police isn't against the law, so being obnoxious with the police while legally carrying a gun isn't always illegal either.

          An educated police force is our best bet here. And an educated public. We'd certainly hope that the requisite 16 hours of citizen training covered something about the citizens' duty to avoid confrontation with the police, exercise restraint and their legal obligations while carrying a weapon. We still haven't heard when we're getting some training - and not just a 10 minute video at roll call. This is kind of important.

          We'll repeat what we've contended for years - over 99% of the Concealed Carry permit people will never have interaction with the police. You'll never see them or their weapons, because these aren't the people out there driving like assholes, domesticating in the street, buying dope around town, robbing strangers, wilding downtown, etc, etc. You will see them if they are forced to exercise their Right in defense of their lives or the lives of another, and in those cases, there are going to be plenty of cops and detectives there, with plenty of bosses running around telling us all what to do (wrongly no doubt.) Cops in 49 other states seem to handle this with few problems, and we're pretty sure we're as smart as most of them.


          A Gun Used to Prevent a Crime

          Imagine that:
          • Police were questioning two men, one with a broken leg, the other with a gunshot wound, after a homeowner repelled two people who broke into his home in Englewood this afternoon, authorities said.

            The Chicago Fire Department took one man, age 23, from the 5500 block of South Bishop Street after an ambulance was called there about 2:25 p.m.,....

            A second person being questioned in the incident went on his own to St. Bernard Hospital and Healtcare [sic] Center with a gunshot wound, a source said.

            Two people forced entry into a home in the 5500 block of South Laflin Street about 2:25 p.m. and were met by an armed homeowner, said Chicago Police News Affairs...
          Cleared/Closed by Arrest/Prosecution. Nice job by the citizen.


          Wednesday, November 20, 2013

          FOP Politics

          Meeting yesterday:
          • I am embarrassed to be in the FOP. The entire meeting was the personal fight between Shields and Dougherty. Dougherty explained how he was helping the vet get a doctors letter so he could come back full duty. The problem was Bill never addressed the issue over bringing politics into the conversation nor did he deny it. That's a problem. One of his minions went to the mic to actually say the letter was a sham. The problem is many of us know the officer and know the letter is true. Donahue made a motion and Bill was voted back into the field rep position. I don't believe Mike will let him back in. The problem is this feud is going to affect our representation. Every meeting from here on in will degenerate into a verbal altercation that last two hours without US the members getting any resolution to the important issues affecting us.
          So it sounds like pretty much nothing was solved, everyone jockeys for position and different factions continue to wheel, deal, lie and posture.

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          Rahm Beats Up on the French

          • When Rahm Emanuel wants to rant, he'll rant. But when it comes to the French, the Chicago mayor is biting his tongue... well, sort of.

            Recent reports revealed a warning to citizens of France on areas to avoid during travels to the United States, including parts of Chicago.

            The warning was highlighted on the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, and suggested visitors "evite el West Side et le sud de la ville apres la 59eme rue," or "avoid the West Side and the south of the city after 59th Street."

            When asked about his reactions France's warning, Emanuel simply said, "Don't get me started on the French."
          So Rahm is looking to join the illustrious ranks of those who have walked over the French, including the Romans, England, Turkey, Switzerland, Spain, Denmark, Holland, the Holy Roman Empire, Germany, Russian, Austria, Haiti (Haiti?), Portugal, Sweden, Mexico, Italy, Vietnam and Algeria. Well done Rahm!

          In the meantime, four people were shot today:
          • two on the 1200 block of West 73rd Street
          • one on the 9500 block of South Wentworth Avenue
          • and another on the 7100 block of South Emerald Avenue
          All of which just happen to be south of 59th Street....but don't let that dissuade the tourists.

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          Rahm's Speed Camera Trap

          • Speed cameras around Chicago schools and parks have churned out more than 2,700 tickets and 324,000 warning notices during the first month of enforcement, but 90 percent of speeders have not been nailed twice.

            Those 2,722 tickets add up to $245,160 in fines during the first 30 days the cameras issued violations.
          Let's just assume that the collection rate on those tickets is 100%. Unrealistic, but just for arguments sake. That's only $2.9 million collected in a year.

          We going to imagine that the crews are going to be pulling double and triple shifts to get as many cameras up and running so Rahm can get his $70 million that has already been spent in the 2014 budget.

          That 90% non-repeater number is disturbing though - people are slowing down, which is safer, but that means speeding cameras might be going the way of red-light cameras shortly - not generating revenue at the predicted rate, leading to even larger budget shortfalls.


          More Media Nonsense

          If you've been watching the news lately, you know that Toronto Mayor Rob Ford has been having his share of personal problems. So the I-Team is running interference for him since all of the city and state pension problems have been solved:
          • The I-Team looks at the embattled Mayor of Toronto Rob Ford and why Mayor Ford is a frequent visitor to Chicago. There's more to it than just Toronto and Chicago being sister cities. 
          Really? All these local problems and the media wants you to know that the Toronto mayor visits Chicago occasionally.  Obviously, it's for hookers and coke. What other reason could there be? Tourism? Sister Cities? Pardon us while we laugh.

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          Tuesday, November 19, 2013

          Ervin Pisses on MLK's Dream Again

          There are scumbags, then there are scumbags. Aldercreature Jason Ervin is the latter:
          • The commander of a West Side police district is leaving to become a police chief in the suburbs — prompting an alderman to demand that Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy fill the position with a black candidate.

            At a budget hearing last month, Ald. Jason Ervin (28th) engaged in a heated confrontation with McCarthy over his decision to transfer James O’Grady, who is white, to the predominately black Harrison District.

            “We have a lot of people at the table. They felt this was just a slap in the face,” Ervin said Monday, adding that West Side residents are planning a news conference before Wednesday’s City Council meeting to turn up the heat on McCarthy.
          Heat? They just had a black commander. And before that, a Polynesian - she was Polynesian, right? She went through her career telling everyone she was Polynesian...."The Lyin' Hawaiian" if we recall.

          In any event, this is "a slap in the face" because only black officers, sergeants, lieutenants and commanders can patrol black areas, right? The community is scarred and fractured over a white guy running the joint for two months:
          • “It was rumored that he was leaving. I don’t think it was necessary to put our community through that kind of strife,” Ervin said of the transition of O’Grady becoming commander in Harrison.
          We drove through 011 the other day and you can barely recognize the place. Irish flags flying every where, streets mostly clean and pothole free, brand new construction and high rises all over the place. Someone even said the Italians were moving back into Our Lady of the Angels.

          And then we woke up.

          This ass is threatening action if they don't get their way:
          • Asked what would happen if the McCarthy replaces O’Grady with another white commander, Ervin, whose father was once commander of the Harrison District, would say only: “Our community will react as needed — as we see fit.”
          Speeches? Marches? Riots maybe? We see how well that worked out about 50 years ago. God forbid he demand the most qualified District Commander who might actually drive down the homicide rate, clean up the open air dope spots and make the neighborhood safe so that grandfathers on the way to their overnight UPS jobs aren't gunned down by parolees doing stickups.

          Nope, gotta be a black guy for Jason. Doesn't he have another slum building in Maywood to run?


          Yet Another Scandal

          Hopefully, you'll hear about it where it might make a difference:
          • In the home stretch of the 2012 presidential campaign, from August to September, the unemployment rate fell sharply — raising eyebrows from Wall Street to Washington.

            The decline — from 8.1 percent in August to 7.8 percent in September — might not have been all it seemed. The numbers, according to a reliable source, were manipulated.

            And the Census Bureau, which does the unemployment survey, knew it.

            Just two years before the presidential election, the Census Bureau had caught an employee fabricating data that went into the unemployment report, which is one of the most closely watched measures of the economy.

            And a knowledgeable source says the deception went beyond that one employee — that it escalated at the time President Obama was seeking reelection in 2012 and continues today.
          So the government manipulated data to make the unemployment rate look better for political purposes. And guess who pioneered the work?
          • Obama moved the Census Bureau into the White House chain of command, under Rahm Emmanuel, just three weeks into his first term.

          • Utah's congressional delegation is calling President Obama's decision to move the U.S. census into the White House a purely partisan move and potentially dangerous to congressional redistricting around the country.

            Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, told FOXNews on Monday that he finds it hard to believe the Obama administration felt the need to place re-evaluation of the inner workings of the census so high on his to-do list, just three weeks into his presidency.

            "This is nothing more than a political land grab," Chaffetz said.
          It was a grab all right, the trouble was the republicans thought it was to manipulate census data instead of unemployment numbers. The phrase, "It's the economy stupid" means a lot less if you're the party issuing the numbers and running campaigns based on the false data. Chicago politics strikes again, and the story will be buried as all Chicago political stories are buried.


          She's Baaaaack

          • Shermain Miles read her Bible on the train, ignoring the wind’s destruction outside as she returned to Chicago on Monday and prepared to pick up the pieces of her own shattered life.

            For those who had been dreading her return to a city where she has amassed 396 arrests since 1978, Miles said: “If they can find it in their hearts to forgive me . . .”

            The metal doors to Logan Correctional Center in Downstate Lincoln opened for Miles on Monday, after she served almost one year for her latest tangle with the law: assaulting Ald. James Cappleman (46th) two summers ago in Uptown.

            A white plastic cross dangled from Miles’ neck as an Illinois Department of Corrections officer escorted her to the Chicago-bound Amtrak train at the platform in tiny Lincoln.
          Place your bets - we give her 60 days and she'll rack up number 397, and IDOC won't even revoke her parole. The neighborhood is betting our way already:
          • Edgewater florist Rick Flinn predicts that will be soon.

            “Oh dear,” he said. “That will be nice for winter. She’ll be up there lying on the sidewalk in the snow.”
          You know, if she was convicted on even 50% of her cases and served a minimum of 1 year, she'd never be a problem again. Keep voting for democrats Edgewater.


          National Ammo Day

          A holiday that had fallen by the wayside in recent years due to the massive shortages of popular calibers. Today is National Ammo Day, however, and all are encouraged to go out and get a couple boxes. Besides aiding the economy, we can all use the practice.


          Monday, November 18, 2013

          A Gun, A Crime and A Paroled Criminal

          What is the same old story, the same old song and dance?
          • Two West Side men including a parolee are facing charges after police said shots were fired in a car causing state police to close two West Loop ramps of the Kennedy Expressway early Saturday, police said.

            Martez Staples, 25, of the 1200 block of South St. Louis Avenue, and Cordero P. Locke, 24, of the 100 block of North Lamon Avenue, were both charged with unlawful use of a weapon by a felon, police said.

            Locke was ordered held on $150,000 bail at his bond hearing today.

            Staples is on parole for an armed robbery conviction and Locke was also charged with a misdemeanor count of resisting arrest, police said.
          Golly, a parolee, with a gun, committing yet another crime. Who would have thunk it? It's not like that has ever happened in Chicago before. What is this world coming to? We better pass some laws to take guns away from the law abiding citizens who aren't out there lighting up expressways, right?

          Where is all the screaming from the politicians and "reverends" over this?


          Police Limit

          This sounds familiar:

          Of course, if you have the media in the bag, you don't even have to spend pennies on the political image.


          An Amazing Admission

          We never thought we'd see anyone admit this publicly, but there it is:
          • On Sunday, appearing on ABC’s This Week with fill-in host Martha Raddatz, Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) admitted that Democrats knew full well that Americans would be booted from their health insurance plans as an effect of Obamacare implementation.

            When asked whether Democrats were misled by President Obama about whether Americans would be able to keep their plans in the individual insurance market, Gillibrand answered: “He should’ve just been specific. No, we all knew.”

            She added that the whole point of Obamacare was to “covering things people need, like preventive care, birth control, pregnancy.” The redistributive nature of Obamacare, Gillibrand stated, was the point of the program; anyone claiming ignorance, therefore, is not telling the truth.
          Amazing. And she'll probably get reelected at some point.


          Sunday, November 17, 2013

          15 Shot Overnight

          Windy, rainy, chilly - perfect shooting weather evidently:
          • At least 15 people were shot across the city during a roughly seven-hour stretch starting Saturday night, including 11 shot within three hours early this morning, according to police.
           Including a triple on the Dan Ryan:
          • Three people suffered what were believed to be non-life threatening injuries when they were shot this evening on the Dan Ryan Expressway, police said.

            The three were shot on Interstate 94 northbound near 59th Street about 8:53 p.m., according to Illinois State Police.
          • Planning a trip abroad? It’s probably best to check out the State Department’s list of travel warnings for countries with unsafe political situations. At the moment, the State Department has issued travel warnings for 34 countries, from the Central African Republic and El Salvador to Iraq and North Korea.

            Well, just as State warns Americans about dangerous places to travel, so too do foreign ministries in other countries — and some countries warn their citizens to avoid heading to certain cities in the U.S. France, in particular, warns travelers to be careful in a large number of specific cities.

            Here’s what other countries, mostly France, say about American cities:

          • Chicago: Stay away from the West Side and anywhere south of 59th Street.
          The governments could just save themselves some time and tell their citizens not to go anywhere democrats are in charge.


          More Exempts Leaving?

          They can't stand McGoof or what?
          • The supt is livid that Goreman and OGrady both dropped tier papers for the end of Nov. Goreman to Amtrak and ogrady to Harwood Hts as the chief. 10 other exempts interviewed for various local Chief jobs. I guess everyone is getting tired of The Supe listening to that egg head Wysinger.

            This is what I do appreciate about SCC. Though a lot of nonsense gets posted, you also get some credible info. As well. An example, the post above. If you follow up and go to Harwood Heights website, click on November 14th board meeting agendas, you will find that the agenda includes a vote to approve O'Grady to the position of chief. Harwood heights has a population of about 8,700 people and a police force of 24. Not an error, 24. That explains why he was shipped out of narcotics to 011. Not a bad guy, he was a working cop in 013, heavy of course though. 
          So will the West Side "revrunds" push for their commander choice again, even though McJersey told them to go pound sand a month ago?


          Bears Favored by 3

          Of course, if Cutler touches the ball, all odds are out the window.

          UPDATE: Bears favored by three, Bears win by three. Vegas really has their shit down, don't they? Even with a two-hour weather delay, they still call it right.


          Saturday, November 16, 2013

          Another Two Parolees

          • A 20-year-old man on parole in a 2009 carjacking is the second person charged in the slaying of a veteran UPS employee who was gunned down in a robbery as he walked to a West Garfield Park "L" stop on his way to work late Tuesday, Cook County prosecutors said.

            Charged Friday afternoon was Derrick Williams, 20, who police said was the gunman who fatally shot Michael Sullivan, 53, as he walked to the Pulaski Green Line "L" stop on his way to work. Earlier Friday, Rayshon Williams, 16, was ordered held on $1 million bond after being charged as an adult with murder Sullivan's slaying.
          And thanks to Governor Potatohead, the democratic run state prisons and parole board, a violent criminal is out in near record time:
          • Derrick Williams was paroled from prison in May in connection with an aggravated vehicular hijacking that took place about 8:40 p.m. on Nov. 18, 2009, in the 200 block of North Karlov Avenue, according to court and police records. He had been sentenced to serve 7 years. Rayshon Williams is on parole in a juvenile possession of a controlled substance case from 2012 when he was arrested, prosecutors said.
          And according to a number of e-mails, this is a west side rarity - a legit victim, set to retire and enjoy his golden years with the grandkids, now nothing but a memory.

          Preckwinkle claims there are too many black and brown persons behind bars and the democratic pols eat this crap up and waive years of sentences at the drop of a hat. Then tey have the audacity to claim they're "saving money" by emptying prisons. Does anyone really give a shit as long as it's the right black and brown people serving time? You know, the predators killing grandfathers just trying to get to the finish line of life.


          Hire Me!

          Another burden on society who will continue to be a burden to society as long as he breathes air:
          • A South Side man has been charged in an August shooting that killed one man and injured four others who were gathered near a church in the city's Uptown neighborhood.

            Kelsky Patterson, 20, of the 4600 block of South Drexel Boulevard has been charged with first degree murder, two counts of attempted first degree murder and two counts of aggravated battery/discharge of a firearm, said police this morning.

            Patterson is accused of being the gunman who shot five people the evening of Aug. 19 on the 1100 block of West Wilson Avenue, said police.
          And here's the asshole's mugshot:

          Nice tattoo. Even if he wasn't looking at life in prison, who in their right mind would even think about hiring this to be a representative of their company? Thugs-R-Us? He wouldn't even be hired as a short order cook in an Arkansas backwater truck stop. But now taxpayers can continue to support him the rest of his miserable existence as a resident of the Department of Corrections.


          Friday, November 15, 2013

          Thanks Rahm....and Mike

          What a pair of assholes - Rahm for his offer, Mike for his incompetence:
          • Mayor Rahm Emanuel is offering Chicago Police officers a 5 percent pay raise over three years — with no retroactive pay raise — and demanding that active officers double their health-care contributions while new retirees pay 4 percent of annuities for coverage now provided for free.

            The mayor also is demanding that rank-and-file police officers join a wellness program they have shunned to control skyrocketing health-care costs.

            Even after two years of nowhere bargaining tied to his contentious relationship with Emanuel, Fraternal Order of Police President Mike Shields was stunned by the mayor’s plan.
          Thanks President One-Term. You're "stunned?" You should be run out of town on a rail. In fact, every single Board member of the FOP should lose their jobs over this for starters. Every. Single. One.

          And fuck you Rahm for pissing all over our service, our sacrifice, and our families. There's a special place in hell for people like you who steal their way to prosperity behind the scenes while the rest of us are just trying to get by.

          Here's a hint FOP - stop negotiating right now. Throw the whole thing to an arbitrator. Rahm obviously isn't negotiating in good faith, so stop the charade. Maybe we'll at least get the 10% we got last time.


          One Bullet = Lockdown

          Anyone else think they're giving kids ideas?
          • A northwest suburban middle school was locked down for more than four hours today after a student found a bullet on a hallway floor, according to an email sent out to parents.

            Dan Coles, superintendent of Wauconda Community Unit School District 118, said in the email that Matthews Middle School in Island Lake was under a “cautionary lock-down” from 8 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. after the bullet was found as students were arriving.

            Thye [sic] investigation that followed included a canine unit, a locker-by-locker search, and review of security footage, according to the email. Police determined it was safe to resume a normal schedule, the email said.
          You know why you never hear about this on the south and west sides? Because if someone found a bullet on the floor, they'd keep it in case someone had a gun that fit it later.


          Gun Turn-In Audit

          • The Chicago Police Department’s Gun Turn-In Program gives participants a gift card in exchange for turning in a gun. It is one of many initiatives to reduce crime in Chicago and has the stated intention of removing guns from the city’s streets.

            The OIG’s audit of CPD’s 2012 Gun Turn-In Event found that CPD accurately and appropriately accounted for all the gift cards distributed to event participants.
          The bad news? Someone doesn't recognize guns:
          • However, the department misclassified up to 6.52% of the replicas as firearms, which could have resulted in up to $4,680 in overpayments.
          And the end result - well, not clear at all:
          • The audit was unable to determine how effective the program is at removing guns from the streets of Chicago due to CPD’s “no questions asked” policy, under which CPD neither requests nor records identifying information, including proof of residency, from the individuals turning in guns. The risks of this policy came to light in a publicly reported incident in which people from outside the Chicago area turned in ‘non-firing junk’ and used the program gift cards to buy new guns and ammunition. 
          As for the "effectiveness" of the program, numerous studies have shown that gun buy-backs do nothing but waste taxpayer money, so we're happy that non-functioning guns worth maybe $5 as scrap metal can be turned in for $50 or $100 and used to buy fully functional guns. Deal of the century as far as we're concerned.


          Donut Discount

          • He really wanted a donut.

            Florida authorities have arrested a man who they say was flashing a fake police badge and a firearm to get discounts at Dunkin Donuts.

            Pasco County police say Charles Barry made two stops at a store in Trinity on Nov. 6 and 7 before he was busted, Fox 13 reports. After the first stop, an employee told their manager about Barry and they were able to get his license plate number on surveillance video when he stopped the next day.

            Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco said Barry told him he got the badge from his father, who is a police officer in Morris County in New Jersey.
          And it wasn't even like a gourmet donut shop. At least our impersonators are doing stick-ups or writing tickets for the Rahm money machine.


          Thursday, November 14, 2013

          Study Material (II)

          Another glaring error - the scenario and solution. You can click the pic for a larger image (we combined the pages into one):

          Pretty straightforward scenario and the correct answer is listed as D.

          Except.....there is no Officer Redmond anywhere in the scenario. Minor oversight? Sure, but enough to open up untold horrors should lawyers get involved - and they always are in City promotional exams. And it just hints at a whole bunch of incompetence on the part of the test constructors.



          • Ten people — including two Daley family friends and some Chicago police officers — were granted immunity from prosecution after they initially refused to testify before the grand jury investigating the death of David Koschman, which led to a manslaughter charge against former Mayor Richard M. Daley’s nephew, the Chicago Sun-Times has learned.

            The two Daley family friends — Kevin McCarthy and his wife Bridget Higgins McCarthy — were with Daley nephew Richard J. “R.J.” Vanecko at the time he allegedly punched Koschman during a drunken confrontation on April 25, 2004, at Division and Dearborn.

            Vanecko and another companion, Craig Denham, took off in a cab. The police stopped and questioned the McCarthys, who at first denied knowing the two men who fled as Koschman lay in the street with brain injuries.

            Kevin McCarthy repeated that story when detectives showed up at his home a few hours later. His wife eventually identified Vanecko to detectives during an interview on May 13, 2004 — a week after Koschman died.

            Bridget McCarthy, 35, is the daughter of developer Jack Higgins, a longtime friend of the mayor who was chosen to build the city’s police headquarters. He recently was picked by the Illinois Medical District to redevelop part of its West Side campus.

            The McCarthys and an unknown number of police officers testified before the grand jury with a grant of immunity from prosecution after first invoking their Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination, the Sun-Times has learned.
          So could someone explain why anyone needed to invoke the Fifth Amendment and receive a grant of immunity from prosecution if this was just a pair of drunks fighting and the investigation was completely on the up-and-up with absolutely no influence or late night phone calls from high ranking bosses and Shortshanks' people?


          Report Corruption or Else!

          • Mayor Rahm Emanuel proposed a measure Wednesday that would require city contractors to immediately report knowledge of corruption to Chicago's inspector general or risk losing their contract.

            The mayor lauded the one-page ordinance as a "key reform" recommended by Inspector General Joseph Ferguson — the city's top watchdog whom the mayor has blocked from accessing City Hall records.

            It's unclear how much impact Emanuel's proposal would have because corrupt contractors are unlikely to tattle on themselves given the potential legal and financial repercussions.
          Tattle on themselves? Has anyone at the Tribune noticed where most corruption begins in this town?

          What happens when contractors start snitching on aldercreatures and connected politicos who solicit "contributions" and kickbacks for contracts? Or form shadow companies fronted by connected minorities that funnel dollars to Outfit members and nephews of mayors?

          We're sure Rahm ran right to federal regulators when he scored an $18 million payday without having any background whatsoever in high finance - right after his check cleared.


          15,000 Free Rides

          • An outage on the Ventra Card system that shut down at least some Ventra readers at 60 of the CTA's 145 "L" stations this afternoon and evening resulted in 15,000 free rides for commuters before the problem was fixed, according to the CTA.

            A "back-office server" failed about 4:30 p.m., causing Ventra readers to go out in a ripple effect that shut readers down from anywhere from 15 to 90 minutes, said CTA spokeswoman Tammy Chase.

            The card readers affected were rebooted, with customer service employees at CTA stations waving through riders in the interim. In total, 165 card readers were affected, out of about 800 Ventra readers at rail stations, Chase said. Buses and other Ventra machines were not affected, she said.
          Anyone losing their job over this? No? Exactly the same as Obamacare.


            Cook County as Bail Bondsman

            • A Cook County commissioner wants to alleviate crowding at the Cook County jail by lending bail money to some nonviolent offenders charged with minor crimes.

              If adopted, the “revolving bail-bond fund” would require tax dollars to get up and running. But the program should pay for itself by reducing the number of prisoners housed at the jail at an estimated cost of $143 per day per inmate, said Commissioner Larry Suffredin, a Democrat who represents parts of northern Cook County.
            We're sure they've looked at every option for reducing that $143 per day, right? Maybe get it down to under $100 somehow? There are limits being proposed for who gets a bond:
            • There are several stipulations about who could get a bail bond loan under the proposal, which was first heard by the County Board on Wednesday.

              For example, only nonviolent offenders who do not pose a flight risk could be eligible. And only inmates who were given small bail amounts would be allowed to participate.

              Also, loans could not be issued to those facing additional charges that may land them right back in jail.
            Ok, we can see that....but then there's this:
            • Another requirement would mandate that those who are released have health insurance or sign up for subsidized coverage offered through the county, according to the resolution.
            Huh? Health insurance? Is this another scheme to drive up Obamacare numbers? Someone want to explain?


            Wednesday, November 13, 2013

            Study Material (I)

            Here's a glaring error spotted in our study group. First, the scenario (click to enlarge):

            Next, the ANOV:
            Finally, the answer:
            It seems that they're going to try to trip you up by specifying whether something is an "error" or an "omission," when in our humble opinion, an omission is an error by definition. We spotted the 14-day mistake and the missing check box. Someone else noticed the missing event number - that's the advantage of studying with a few other people - multiple eyeballs.

            But the most glaring error that we all spotted, and the study guide doesn't even touch upon, is the address of occurrence and of the respondent are transposed. Now, we read the study guide and they cover their asses by saying that you may find other errors not noted, but wouldn't prudence dictate that you are given a complete set of answers for different scenarios just so you can have a basic idea of what they're looking for?

            Whoever put this together and edited it are obviously morons.


            Hey Rahm....How About This?

            • It’s similar in size to a radar gun — and it too is meant to hunt down offenders. This telescopic-shaped device in the hands of investigators isn’t held at eye level though, but at their noses.

              The “Nasal Ranger,” as it’s called, is being used by authorities in Denver to investigate odor complaints, including marijuana-related scents.

              According to the Denver Post, Ben Siller, an investigator with the Denver Department of Environmental Health, uses the device to help track down odor law violators.

              In a city where backyard marijuana smoking is now legal and state where pot stores and legal growing will be allowed by 2014, such devices might come in handy. But Siller said its unlikely pot will result in any official code violations.
            And a picture of the device in action:

            Tact Teams everywhere can't wait!



            • The ABC7 I-Team looked into former Chicago Bears receiver Sam Hurd, who faces life in prison without parole on federal drug charges.

              The ABC7 I-Team finds that former Chicago Bears receiver Sam Hurd faces life in prison without parole at his sentencing Wednesday on federal drug charges.

              There is video of the fallen-NFL star from the night he was arrested in northwest suburban Rosemont.

              On December 14, 2011, video shows Chicago Bear wide receiver Sam Hurd walking out of Morton's Steakhouse in Rosemont to his car in a dark parking lot. He was carrying a gift bag containing a brick of cocaine. Moments later, federal agents and police moved in.
            They're wasting time on a dope dealer who happened to be in the NFL. He was making a deal to move 50 kilos a week into Chicago, poison that's killing how many people and leading to how much gunfire, maimings and murder?

            We guess the pension mess must be fixed, Chicago, Cook County and Illinois budgets must be balanced, constitutional pension fixes must have passed and local politicos must have swept the decks clean of any pending matters.


            Tuesday, November 12, 2013

            Part II Study Material Problems

            Like many of you, some of our number have started studying for Part II of the Sergeant Exam, even though scores won't be issued for another five weeks or so.

            It has been brought to the attention of the group here that the study materials appear to be rife with bad data - incorrect info, partial answers, errors in construction and grammatical mistakes that would make Sister Mary Margaret rap our knuckles with a ruler if we ever turned in a paper like this.

            All of this makes us and others question the credibility of the test anew and wonder at the possibility of invalidation again. Is anyone else, either in the study groups or on their own, discovering what had been brought to our notice?


            Police Work Made Easy

            • As a former bouncer and martial arts master, Jason Chan has an eye out for people who look like trouble.

              So on Thursday, when a man who seemed nervous walked into Juno, the restaurant he co-owns, Chan kept his eye on him. The man seemed too disheveled to be trying to get a table at the Michelin-recognized restaurant at 2638 N. Lincoln Ave.

              “He had his jacket in his hand, and it was kind of cold out,” Chan said.

              The man asked the bartender for a piece of paper and a pen, then he placed his jacket on the bar. He quickly grabbed it back and ran out of the restaurant as Chan watched.

              Chan asked the customer closest to where the man had stood if he had his phone, which had been on the bar. Gary Wolske, a Juno regular, told Chan his iPhone 5 was missing.
            What happened next is just jaw droppingly hilarous:
            • He saw him walk into Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria at Wrightwood and Lincoln.

              Chan pulled up in front of the pizzeria and confronted him as he tried to repeat his jacket ploy at the bar.

              “We engaged with each other, and he tried to push me out of the way and run out,” Chan said. “I grabbed him and threw him into the door.”

              While people watching the incident called police, Chan, who teaches a type of martial art called Shidokan, fought the man on the sidewalk.

              “He was adversarial, [so I used] hand-to-hand combat techniques to make sure he was unconscious,” Chan said.

              “I put him in a maneuver called an arm bar and told him I would break his arm if he tried to get away,” Chan said. The man kept fighting, so Chan knocked him out with a kick to the face and neutralized him until the police arrived a few minutes later.

              When the man came to, Chan made him admit what he had done — and where the phone was — to the crowd that had gathered.

            Citizens arrest, then a citizen beating and confession. Where's the citizen IPRA when you need it?


            C'mon Sinkhole!

            • A sinkhole swallowed part of a road in the West Pullman neighborhood on the Far South Side this morning, officials said.

              City crews have closed off the area around the hole near 124th Street and Wentworth Avenue.

              According to an e-mail from Shannon Breymaier of the Mayor's Press Office, the city Department of Water Management is still investigating, but based on what is known now, a leaking water line running from the water main to a home breached a sewer main and washed away the soil underlying the street. The street caved in, breaking an 8-inch water main, resulting in a hole that is about 30 feet deep and 14 feet wide.
            We hoping another one opens up around Clark/Washington and Randolph/LaSalle and then a third at 35th and Michigan.


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