Chicago police "slow down"


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HIcarry
September 18, 2008, 08:49 PM
I saw this article and thought it was interesting not necessarily because of the alleged "slow down" nor do I wish to appear to be "cop bashing" in any way. However, I thought it interesting that last year (2007) the police supposedly confiscated over 10,000 firearms in a city that has basically outlawed them kind of interesting. I wonder if there is any way to see how many firearms were confiscated in a similarily sized city that was more "firearm friendly?"

http://www.cnn.com/2008/CRIME/09/18/chicago.police.rebel.ap/index.html?iref=werecommend

CHICAGO, Illinois (AP) -- Serious crime is up but arrests are down in Chicago, Illinois, and some police officers say they are working the streets less aggressively out of resentment toward their new chief and fear of being second-guessed by him.


Police haven't stopped responding to crime scenes, they say -- they're just not going the extra mile.

"People are doing just what they need to get through" their shifts, said Lt. Robert Weisskopf, president of the Chicago police lieutenants union, "and not any extra."

In addition to making fewer arrests, police are seizing fewer guns and frisking gang members less often than they did before Superintendent Jody Weis was brought in to clean up a department embarrassed by a string of brutality cases, according to interviews, statistics provided by police and an internal document obtained by The Associated Press.

Department spokeswoman Monique Bond disputed the notion of any deliberate slowdown by police, saying, "There is nothing that we have to prove or support a theory like that."

She suggested instead that the drop in arrests means officers are focusing on serious crimes instead of such offenses as disorderly conduct and public drinking.

But some members of the police department, both publicly and privately, blame low morale and fear of investigation by Weis, a former FBI agent who took over in February.

"If I see a crime happening, I take action," said an officer who has more than 25 years on the force and spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of retaliation. "But I don't go out of my way to stop someone on a hunch or if they look suspicious. I don't want to be accused of racial profiling and run afoul of this guy who we know won't back us up."

Through the end of August, the department made 103,589 arrests (not including arrests for outstanding arrest warrants) compared with 117,971 for the same period last year, according to the department. The 5,600 guns recovered is roughly half as many as police seized in the same period in 2007, internal documents show.

Bookings in the Cook County Jail -- where the vast majority of inmates come from Chicago -- are down, too. In all but one month this year, the number of people booked into the jail was down from the same month a year earlier, sometimes by hundreds, according to data obtained by the AP through a Freedom of Information Act request.

Chicago has had 322 murders through August 21, or 42 more than the number committed through the same date last year. Also, police have received 10,000 more calls from people about shots being fired, and the number of calls about gang disturbances has jumped by nearly 4,000, according to the department documents.

"It is de-policing," said city Alderman Isaac Carothers, who heads the committee that oversees the department. "They do their jobs, but they don't do their jobs as aggressively."

Nobody is suggesting that the more than 13,000 officers in the nation's second-largest police department aren't racing to crime scenes or faithfully pursuing investigations.

But among the slew of statistics kept by the department are "self-initiated" calls, or those in which officers stop and question people about possible drug or gang activity. Department figures show the total is down by more than 3,700 from the same period last year.

At a City Council hearing in July, Weis called the rising crime figures and falling arrest numbers "very troubling."

Weis has said officers have told him they are afraid of being sued or becoming the subject of complaints by criminals. Weis has told their commanders to drive home the message that he wants them to be aggressive and that "the department will have their back," Bond said.

Brought in with a mandate from Mayor Richard Daley to repair the reputation of a department, Weis shook things up almost immediately.

The first outsider to run the department in decades, Weis replaced 21 of 25 district commanders. He created a new Bureau of Professional Standards, which oversees the Internal Affairs Division, the unit that investigates officers.

He also started talking about getting police officers in better shape and ordered those on desk duty to hit the streets.

In addition, he asked federal officials to investigate an officer who had already pleaded guilty to beating a handcuffed man shackled to a wheelchair and was serving a two-year suspension. That angered the rank-and-file.

They felt the officer "did something wrong and he paid his debt to society," Weisskopf said. "But it was as if that wasn't good enough, 'We didn't get our complete pound of flesh."'

Since then, "guys feel the superintendent and the administration does not have their back," said John Pallohusky, president of the police sergeants union.

The mistrust grew after the department announced recently that every police car would be equipped with electronic tracking devices and officers would be asked to submit DNA samples at crime scenes.

"If you don't feel your bosses support you, are you going to stick your neck out?" Weisskopf asked.

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Blackbeard
September 18, 2008, 09:40 PM
Sounds like Chicago to me. If I were this Weis guy, I'd have someone start my car for me.

Pilgrim
September 18, 2008, 11:39 PM
Weis has said officers have told him they are afraid of being sued or becoming the subject of complaints by criminals. Weis has told their commanders to drive home the message that he wants them to be aggressive and that "the department will have their back," Bond said.
If your first act as chief is to replace 21 of 25 district commanders, you just might have a problem communicating that you will cover your officer's backs. Especially if the replacements are viewed as being the chief's toadies.

Pilgrim

lysander
September 18, 2008, 11:41 PM
You mean to tell me that Chicago cops are bucking against a Fibbie outsider who has been brought in to "clean up the department."?

This is...

This is...

Well it is shocking I tell you. Simply shocking.

....now if only the suburban cops could do something about Drew Peterson's "sawed off assault rifle."

modifiedbrowning
September 18, 2008, 11:51 PM
In addition, he asked federal officials to investigate an officer who had already pleaded guilty to beating a handcuffed man shackled to a wheelchair and was serving a two-year suspension. That angered the rank-and-file.
Shouldn't this "Officer" be in jail, not on suspension?

Don Gwinn
September 19, 2008, 12:01 AM
What made them mad is that the guy was tried or adjudicated or whatever it is, and he was sentenced to a two-year suspension, plus anger counseling or some such.

He served his suspension, he did the counseling; in other words, he paid the debt he was told he had to pay for his crime.

THEN Weis came in and brought him up on one count of federal civil rights violation purely to get the case into the federal courts and then plastered the guy to the wall.

I can see Weis's point that the guy should have gone to jail in the first place (and at a minimum, he can't be trusted to be a cop anymore.) On the other hand, I can see the cops' point, too. Whether a sentence is fair or not, if one is handed down by legitimate authority, and the defendant serves that sentence, going out of your way to find a way to throw him in jail certainly makes it look like you're just looking for fall guys who will make good examples--and it would be naive to think that a boss who did that was going to stand behind his employees.

The trouble with Chicago cops asking for bosses who will stand up for them is that all too often they're in trouble for good reason.

Deanimator
September 19, 2008, 12:43 AM
The trouble with Chicago cops asking for bosses who will stand up for them is that all too often they're in trouble for good reason.
As they say in England, "spot on".

Chicago cops aren't angry that officers like Cozzi (the brave conqueror of old STABBED men handcuffed to wheelchairs) are being unfairly punished. They're angry that they're being PUNISHED. Read http://secondcitycop.blogspot.com for a while. No small number of them are enraged that the drunken cop who savagely stomped the barmaid who wouldn't serve him is being prosecuted. They've said he didn't "hurt" her, and even that she DESERVED it, for "touching" him. They frequently say that he deserves a short suspension for beating her, while completely ignoring the fact that he threatened the victim and witnesses with planted evidence and false arrest. They defend the home invasion gang which operated inside the Chicago PD by saying they only robbed criminals, as though that were a GOOD thing, nevermind the fact that their victims included at least one Chicago cop and a fireman. They've said "there but for the grace of god, go I" when referring to the cop who recently got insane drunk and beat up a 50 year old woman and a 63 year old man in a bar in Niles. Niles cops found the cop in some bushes, PASSED OUT ON TOP OF HIS FIREARM.

The Chicago PD has NO disciplinary process worthy of the name. Weis, in his inept way, is attempting to impose one and they absolutely hate him for it.

Deanimator
September 19, 2008, 12:50 AM
Shouldn't this "Officer" be in jail, not on suspension?
Not apparently to the Chicago PD. Another officer shot an unarmed man in the head. Not realizing that he was standing under a bank of Transit Authority surveillance cameras, he spun a gripping tale of being "surrounded" and "attacked". The former Police Superintendent, a friend, repeated his lies verbatim. When the videos came to light, the PD tried to suppress them. When they couldn't be suppressed, the Superintendent overruled the Police Board's recommendation that he be fired and suspended him... for THIRTY DAYS. Yep, a guy got a thirty day suspension... for AT BEST, criminally negligent homicide. He's never even been CHARGED with a crime. He and the PD recently were found liable for a multi-million dollar judgement for the family.

chris in va
September 19, 2008, 01:03 AM
Upstanding citizens in Chicago definitely need to get their gun rights back. This is ridiculous.

M203Sniper
September 19, 2008, 02:37 AM
Chicago = Corruption.





So somebody does something about it, good. Then what?

wideym
September 19, 2008, 04:44 AM
Chicago's well earned reputation for corruption is just what it's citizens seen to want. They elect the same politicans over and over, year after year, even though those same politicians condone police corruption and butality by ignoring it, covering it up, or giving some token speach about cleaning it up.

An outside former FBI agent leading the charge to clean up the CPD is just what they needed, wether they are willing to addmit it or not. I certainly hope he sticks around long enough to actually make a difference, but will probably end up getting fired when he won't cover up local politicians corruption investigations.

Treo
September 19, 2008, 05:04 AM
Where's Buford Pusser ( Ya know, W/ a name like that you've got to be a bad ass) when you need him?

Deus Machina
September 19, 2008, 05:12 AM
I doubt the general populace of Chicago wants this. The thing to remember is that 75%--at the very lowest--of humanity is a flock of ignorant sheep, and maybe 10% of that can be brought up otherwise if informed of the facts.

The people they vote for is who smiles the best, or who gets their election-time mudslinging in just before they get in the car to vote.

What I want to know is: why is it always the places that have the strictest gun bans the ones that have police corruption like this?

Is it because the police are afraid people might fight back? The corruption of politicians just go hand-in-hand with it? I mean, you never see a politician without an armed guard, so it's all good, right? Or (hopefully, on a technical sense) is it that places with more legally armed citizens have crime rates low enough that the police departments can afford to not allow these types of people in?

memphisjim
September 19, 2008, 06:30 AM
is there any chance that less crimes are happening?

Deanimator
September 19, 2008, 07:13 AM
is there any chance that less crimes are happening?
Yes, and my anti-rhino charm has kept Rocky River, Ohio safe from rampaging rhinos since 1999.
Less crime? It depends upon whether you consider shootings a "crime". There was one weekend a few months ago where more than thirty people were shot. But how does that happen in a city with NO guns...?

Deanimator
September 19, 2008, 07:23 AM
What I want to know is: why is it always the places that have the strictest gun bans the ones that have police corruption like this?

Is it because the police are afraid people might fight back?
That's absolutely IMPOSSIBLE!

From Wikipedia:

Jerome Finnigan

Jerome Finnigan, Keith Herrera, Carl Suchocki, and Thomas Sherry were indicted in September 2007 for robbery, kidnapping, home invasion, and other charges. They were alleged to have robbed drug dealers and ordinary citizens of money, drugs, and guns. The officers were all part of Special Operations Sections or SOS. The officers had allegedly victimized citizens for years, however it was not until 2004 that allegations of misconduct were investigated. According to the State's Attorney, the tip off was that the officers repeatedly missed court dates and allowed alleged drug dealers to go free. Several lawsuits alleging misconduct on behalf of Finnigan and his team have been filed in federal court. Since the original indictments, Jerome Finnigan has also been charged with attempting to have several fellow officers killed. Since the scandal involving Finnigan, SOS has since been disbanded. FBI Sworn Affidavit

romma
September 19, 2008, 07:56 AM
Cleaning up the Police Dept is one thing, but they should start at the top first! Apparently the mayor has no accountability here.

The people of Chicago, much like the people in NJ have never tasted freedom of oppression, so they don't know what they are even missing. I can't wait till the Chicago gun lawsuit is settled.

Deanimator
September 19, 2008, 08:39 AM
I can't wait till the Chicago gun lawsuit is settled.
Daley says he's not going to settle.

Why should he? It's not his money.

bdickens
September 19, 2008, 10:29 AM
That's it, Daley! Fight, fight fight! Fight right down to the bitter end!

Aguila Blanca
September 19, 2008, 02:11 PM
The problem is that the Chicago cops want to keep on acting like Chicago cops and have the brass continue to cover up for and protect them. Maybe if they'd staret acting like professional law enforcement officers rather than common thugs they wouldn't have to worry about whether or not the Chief will stand behind them instead of behind the firing squad.

Mannlicher
September 19, 2008, 04:13 PM
Chicago has been toast for years. Now Daley, in his zeal to 'meet Kyoto protocols', has doomed the place.
Gang violence is out of control, the city's finances are beyond repair, and now this police 'slow down'.
Don't forget, this is the place that gave us Hussein Obama as well.

jad0110
September 19, 2008, 04:37 PM
What I want to know is: why is it always the places that have the strictest gun bans the ones that have police corruption like this?


Posted before elsewhere on THR...



http://i135.photobucket.com/albums/q139/jad0110/Whenonlythegovthasguns.jpg


This is not intended as cop bashing. Just Chicago politics in general bashing.

ilbob
September 19, 2008, 04:38 PM
Chicago cops have had no effective supervision for 2 or 3 or 4 decades and like it that way. Thats what led to the out of control behaviors that characterize this agency.

Sadly, the members of the CPD just don't get it.

Read secondcitycop.blogspot.com (SCC) and you will see they just do not care how bad they behave, for the most part they consider it acceptable.

As for Cozzi's punishment, the way I see it is he committed a flagrant crime, and really no one, even his blue brothers dispute it. That the PD conspired to keep him out of jail, and then to give him his job back is outrageous. Kudos to Weis for dealing with this thug in the only way he could.

My guess is hundreds (maybe thousands) of CPD officers are in for the perp walk, resignation, or retirement (a fair number of supervisory people have already "retired"). The feds have a lot of patience, and Weis is a retired fed.

SCC and the cops that post there have some legitimate gripes with the city. But there is a need to clean house before those gripes can be dealt with.

Deanimator
September 19, 2008, 04:49 PM
Read secondcitycop.blogspot.com (SCC) and you will see they just do not care how bad they behave, for the most part they consider it acceptable.
Not only do they not care how badly they behave, they're not bashful about saying that they don't care what anybody thinks about it. SecondCityCop blog is a real eye opener for those not in the know. The racial slurs, the misogyny, the defenses of third rate banditry, they tell you what's really going on in that organization.

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