CAPS is Dead??
- The Chicago Police Department program known as CAPS is over in the Shakespeare District, according to the district’s new commander.
“CAPS is dead. We need to drive a stake right through its heart,” Police Cmdr. Marc Buslik told a group of Logan Square residents at Haas Park Monday night — at what was formerly known as a CAPS meeting.
The Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy has become an obsolete term since the program began in 1992, Buslik said. Now, more than 20 years later, the strategy has become a philosophy, and “there’s nothing alternative about it.”
He not only pronounces the corpse, he sets it on fire:
- “We need to reinvent ourselves,” the district’s top officer said, noting that a renewed commitment to “community policing” is the new priority for the Shakespeare District.
So what, exactly, is the difference?
According to Buslik, an academic at heart who's working on a doctorate in criminology, the end of CAPS and the start of community policing lies in redirecting police from the role of a “warrior” to that of a “guardian” in the communities they serve.
“We need to get back to the root of community policing and talk about it as such,” Buslik said, laying out what he called a “co-production of public safety.”
So pretty much everything we used to do back in the day before the CAPS disease arrived and pretty much stifled actual policing. Now how about putting the dozens of CAPS officers back on the street and disbanding the downtown Bureau headed by a Deputy Chief and hiding dozens more Officers whose time would be better spent in the districts. And that CAPS money....redirect some of that funding, too.