CHICAGO — As more armed robberies and carjackings on the North Side leave Chicagoans on edge in the neighborhoods they call home, residents took to the pavement to try and find a solution to the unlawful surge.
Since Dec. 6, police have responded to 11 robberies or carjackings in Lincoln Park. Ald. Michele Smith (43rd Ward) organized a community walk as the peace and tranquility of days past is now in the crosshairs of criminals.
“This is our community, and we’re going to show you by being out here,” Smith said.
Smith said extra patrol in the area is already working.
“[Police] made an arrest last night with one person in a carjacking, and we are so thrilled with the great police work,” she said. “The guy went to bond court and is staying in custody which is very important to have violent offenders stay in custody.”
In response to the uptick in violent crime, police issued a community alert warning residents to remain vigilant. As armed robberies and carjackings on the North Side rise, so too are spikes in liquor stores and restaurant burglaries.
Police say the offenders are working in two or three-person crews.
Six Flags Great America released the following statement regarding the shooting:
Six Flags dedicates our greatest amount of time, talent and resources to safety and security.
Layers of preventative measures both inside and outside the park are in place for the protection of guests and team members. We continue to review and enhance our protocol on a daily basis to ensure we are providing the highest level of safety.
Cameras placed in the parking lot and inside the park, uniformed and plain clothes patrols throughout the property, and advanced screening technology allow us to react quickly and provide important information. The park security team is joined by the Gurnee Police Department, who operates a substation at the park.
This evening, we are incredibly grateful to our team members who reacted in a professional manner to take care of our guests, and for the Gurnee Police Department for their on-going presence and commitment to Six Flags Great America.
In the act of solidarity, community members walked down the very streets where some of these crimes had occurred.
“I think there is a handful of bad actors,” Paul Mokdessi, a neighborhood resident, said. “A handful of people and crews that are coming and taking advantage of the situation, and I think we can stop it, though. I’ve lived in Chicago for over 30 years and never felt this way. So I think this is a temporary thing.”