By Judd Mustin, The Chicago Times
December 29, 2021
CHICAGO – According to a police dispatcher, there is an extreme shortage of police officers on the Northwest Side.
Dispatcher Keith Thornton Jr., upheld as a hero on the night Ella French was shot, declared on Christmas Eve via Facebook Live of CPD shortages in the 16th District.
The 16th district covers areas north of Belmont and west of Cicero.
According to Thornton, “When you call 911, you’re not getting a quick response like many other parts of the city. Officers are not coming to you.”
Thornton went on to describe a recent night when scores of police cruisers in the 16th district were unavailable or operating with just one officer.
According to Alderman Nick Sposato, 38th Ward “. . . we are short in 16, there’s no if ands or buts about it. Totally unacceptable to me and the 7 other aldermen that are represented in the 16th district. Therefore, we had a meeting with Superintendent Brown today and First Deputy Carter and Chief of Patrol McDermott, they’re aware of what’s going on.”
The results of the meeting ended with a statement saying, “Per the Superintendent, sworn officer personal will be returning to the districts, to include the 16th District. The 16th District will also be receiving additional police bids in early 2022.”
According to reports, 30 percent of the 16th district is currently on medical leave due to COVID.