Mag Mile Alderman wants more police to prevent disturbances
One Chicago alderman wants police to step up their presence downtown following a series of disturbances over the weekend.
Ald. Brendan Reilly, 42nd, says more help, more planning and more resources are needed to deter outbursts like the one that happened on the Magnificent Mile on Saturday.
There were two separate incidents downtown that called for police response.
17 young people were arrested for disturbances along Michigan Avenue. Police say the suspects bumped into people, blocked sidewalks and stopped traffic.
11-teenagers were arrested after 2 women were attacked on the CTA’s red line in The Loop. Several people have been charged with misdemeanor reckless conduct.
Ald. Reilly has praised the police response to the incidents. But he wants police to do more to prevent the attacks from happening in the first place.
The attacks have business owners and city officials worried about the impact these incidents will have on tourism.
Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy points out that his police officers were on top of the situation right away.
“The answer is: We’re there, we’re doing our jobs,” McCarthy said. “And the strategy downtown is high-profile visibility and enforcement where appropriate.”
When asked if the groups of young people organized through Facebook and Twitter, McCarthy quickly shot it down.
“They’re not organized,” he said. “If they were, it’d be an entirely different issue. The fact is, nice weather, people go downtown and those kids have every right to go downtown. They behavior they engage in, if it’s illegal, they’ll be arrested quickly.”
The Mayor believes it will take more than police to deter the disturbances created by young people.
“Parents have a role to play,” Emanuel said. “The kids of those parents on the weekend have a role to play. So nobody gets a pass who is an adult and accountable. Nobody.”
This comes as the Chicago Police Department releases new crime statistics showing that overall, crime in the city is down 8% in the first three months of this year.