December Round Up

Public officials are supposed to lead by example, but most public officials in Illinois and Chicago prefer to live by the old adage: “do what I say not as I do.”  The truth is that there is a no snitching policy in Chicago and Illinois: both among the community members in Chicago and among our political leaders and other public officials, most importantly among the Chicago Police Department.  Over the last 100 years, there has been one scandal after another involving brutal and/or corrupt Chicago Police Officers.  There is one common thread present in almost every case, the fact that “nobody (in blue) knows nuthin” (perfect example of the no snitch code to me).  To expect community members who risk serious violence for coming forward and cooperating to act with more courage and integrity than those charged with upholding the law is disingenuous at best.

Weis in the Tribune:
“There is not a “sense of community and civic urgency” to share information with police, Weis said at the time, lamenting the “code of silence.”

One could easily say the same thing about officers within the Chicago Police Department.  The media has an extremely short memory when dealing with integrity issues and the Chicago Police Department.  To date four officers from the Special Operations Section of the Chicago Police Department have been indicted, federal indictments are expected very soon.  This unit had 100 officers, are both the media and the department wanting us to believe that nobody in the unit, other than those indicted currently, witnessed a criminal act and failed to report it?  If the Chicago Police Department wants community members to act responsibly, while simultaneously putting their lives in jeopardy for cooperating, the Department must lead by example and demonstrate a track record of officers within the department taking steps to root out the bad officers.  Anything less is nothing more than the same.

Superintendent Weis on Chicago Tonight:

In 2010, CJP will initiate a bimonthly fact sheet series that will highlight areas for which public discussion is lacking and where data can provide more insight into the issues.  One such fact sheet will be on the switch from the current 6 days on 2 days off schedule to the new 4 days on 2 days off schedule in 2010.

During Superintendent Weis’ appearance on Chicago

Tonight, Phil Ponce brought up the new schedule that the Department is switching to without providing a more in depth analysis to inform both community members and policy makers of the repercussions of the switch.  Information has been provided to CJP that indicates fewer officers will be on the streets each day after the new schedule takes effect.  With all the talk from alderman and officers about needing more cops in their communities the Department is moving forward with a new schedule that will provide officers more days off through the course of the year and provide fewer officers on the streets every day in Chicago’s communities.

“Jury spares serial killer the death penalty”

This case really is the icing on the cake.  This guy kills 11 women and does not get the death penalty?  How can anyone say this form of punishment is not arbitrary and capricious based on this decision?  You would have thought the cases of Rolando Cruz and Alejandro Hernandez would have been enough to prove it, or at least enough to kill the political career of a public official whose performance was so below our expectations.  But then again this is Illinois and we are a forgiving people so a simple apology is sufficient to wash away convicting two men to death, twice, for a crime they never committed.

“epidemic of children killing children”

It is interesting to hear the different messages that come from the Daley administration when you pay attention.  In September, Chicago Public School’s CEO Ron Huberman detailed his new plan to assist children most likely to be victimized by violence on the street by applying interventions in hopes of impacting the children’s lives, find a blog post on that topic here.  The part of Humberman’s plan that is of interest here is that his analysis proved that the vast majority of violent crime victimizations occurred a significant distance from the schools and hours after they let out.  How exactly are the cameras that Daley is proposing to place inside and outside the school as detailed by Fran Spielman going to impact these incidents?  It seems like Daley is targeting in school or just after school violence and Huberman is targeting violence that after data analysis is most likely going to provide opportunities for Chicago Public School students to be victims of gun violence, hours after school has let out and a significant distance from school grounds.  It seems like Huberman is using data to make his decisions, what is Daley using?

Tracy has nearly two decades of experience researching and working within criminal justice systems. When Tracy began pursuing a career dedicate to system reform, he found that no single organization existed to promote evidence-based discussions among law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve. Recognizing that citizens in Chicago deserved the right to demand transparency in their criminal justice system, Siska established the Chicago Justice Project. He received his Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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