Waukegan: Man Found Murdered In Driveway

By The Chicago Times Staff

October 3, 2022

WAUKEGAN, IL – A man was discovered shot to death inside a vehicle parked in the driveway of a Waukegan home early Monday.

According to police, officers responded to a call of shots fired at a home in the 1300 block of Chestnut Street in Waukegan around 12 am.  On scene, officers found a male victim shot multiple times inside the driver’s seat of a vehicle parked in the driveway.  Police said the victim was in his 40s.  Police do not believe the shooting was random and are investigating.

Waukegan Police are asking for any information leading to solving the murder and can be contacted via their tip line 847-360-9001.

Chicago Man Arrested In Alleged Attempted West Loop Kidnapping

By James R. Scott, The Chicago Times

September 28, 2022

CHICAGO – A Chicago man has been arrested Tuesday in connection with the attempted kidnapping of two women and attacking a third on Sunday

According to police, around 8:30 am, 32-year-old Quavon Ewing allegedly dragged a 36-year-old woman to his van on Sunday.  The victim was walking in the 100 block of West Roosevelt in Chicago when she observed Ewing allegedly urinating next to his maroon van.  As the victim passed Ewing, he allegedly placed her into a bear hug and attempted to drag her to his van.  The victim claims Ewing was moaning and acting like a pervert.  The victim was able to get away from Ewing by beating him with her cell phone and biting him on the neck.  Ewing allegedly drove off in his van, after which the victim contacted police.

Around 8:45 am, Ewing allegedly attempted to kidnap a 45-year-old woman on her way home from Starbucks in the 200 block of Sangamon Street.  The victim alleges that Ewing walked in front of her and then grabbed her by the shoulders and attempted to drag her into his van.  The victim shouted and screamed for mercy as Ewing allegedly dragged her to within inches of the open van door.  In an attempt to silence his victim, Ewing allegedly punched her in the head.  Police said the victim’s fingernails scratched into the van’s body paint as she resisted.  Luckily, a bystander intervened and confronted Ewing.  Ewing allegedly threatened the bystander with a blunt instrument and then fled the scene in his van.

Later that morning, around 9:03 am, Ewing was seen on a CTA surveillance camera urinating inside a container near the 600 block of South State Street.  According to the camera footage, Ewing crossed paths with a 25-year-old woman that was entering the Blue Line Train Station.  As the woman passed Ewing, he pour a full container of urine on her hair, face, and mouth.

Ewing was later identified by the two previous victims.  Ewing was also identified by video surveillance showing him fleeing the scene after attempting to kidnap the 45-year-old woman.

A Cook County judge has set a $500,000 bond along requiring electronic monitoring.  Ewing has also been ordered to have no contact with the victims, witnesses or CTA.

BGA: City Council Should Declare Independence From Heavy Handed Lightfoot

By Edward LaSalle, The Chicago Times

September 24, 2022

CHICAGO – The Better Government Association has recommended that the Chicago City Council should take steps to be more independent from Mayor Lori Lightfoot by choosing its own committee chairs.

According to the Better Government Association, both state law and Roberts Rules of Order does give the City Council the authority to choose its own committee chairs.  However, that power has always been relinquished to the sitting mayor of Chicago, which has forever depicted the council as a mayoral rubber stamp.  Currently, Chicago is the only major city that allows its mayor to dictate who will be council committee chairs.

“Leadership positions are more than symbolic: Committees come with their own budgets and staff, are overseen by the chairs, and chairs traditionally set the agenda and decide which matters will be heard in their committees, as well. Allowing the mayor to appoint committee chairs cedes substantial power from the legislature to the administration,” Bryan Zarou, the BGA’s director of policy wrote in a statement.

However, Lightfoot, often accused of being dictatorial, has made it clear she will not cede power to her rubber stamp.

As more disgruntled Alderman exit, due to Lightfoot’s heavy handedness, Zarou urged the City Council to use this opportunity to take back control from the mayor.

“The Better Government Association Policy team urges City Council to take this opportunity to act as an independent, co-equal branch of government, both by taking up Ald. Martin’s resolution and by appointing an active and engaged leader as chair of the education committee,” Zarou wrote in a statement.

Orland Park To Bypass Controversial SAFE-T Act

By T. C. Mayfield and Frank Conklin, The Chicago Times

September 21, 2022

ORLAND PARK, IL – In response to the controversial SAFE-T Act, Orland Park announced a new policing program involving the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

According to the new plan, which was approved Monday, Orland Park has agreed to make two Orland Park police officers part time ATF agents which will open the door to submitting cases directly to the Assistant US Attorney.  The plan is set to sunset in 2027.

Orland Park Mayor Keith Pekau believes this is one way to get around the controversial SAFE-T Act.  The SAFE-T Act, or Safety, Accountability, Fairness and Equity-Today Act, will make Illinois the first state to eliminate cash bail with the expectation that released alleged criminals will appear in court of their own accord.  It has been reported that nearly 100 Illinois state’s attorneys oppose the new law, which will take effect January 1, 2023.

“This came about because our police department was looking for ways to bypass both Kim Foxx who often times doesn’t charge some of these cases, and often times we get very poor bails, and with the SAFE-T Act, it’s going to be much worse, so this allows us to go to the federal government and will allow them to not only bring charges, but hold people on bail, so that will be great for us as well,” Pekau said in a statement.

Kim Foxx, the Cook County State’s Attorney, has been under fire for her policies on limited bail and out right release of alleged criminals awaiting trial.  Some of the released alleged criminals have been involved in violent crimes that have ended in murder on the streets of Chicago.

Governor J. B. Pritzker believes the SAFE-T Act will address the economic disparities of the criminal justice system.

“Making sure that we’re also addressing the problem of a single mother who shoplifted diapers for her baby, who is put in jail and kept there for six months because she doesn’t have a couple of hundred dollars to pay for bail.  So that’s what the Safe-T Act is about.  Are there changes, adjustments that need to be?  Of course, and there have been adjustments made and there will continue to be.  Laws are not immutable,” Pritzker decreed in press conference.

Sources in Springfield admitted the SAFE-T Act was passed so quickly that many lawmakers did not take the time to read what was written in the act.

CDOT To Install Safety Features At 15 Intersections

By The Chicago Times Staff

September 18, 2022

CHICAGO – Chicago Department of Transportation will install speed bumps and posts at 15 intersections to enhance pedestrian safety and reduce motorist collisions.

Continuing a 2019 plan, CDOT is installing new traffic-safety features to alter or restrict left-hand turning motorist at city intersections.

The new safety features include rubber speed bumps, hardened center lines, and vertical posts that force drivers to turn at safer speeds and prevent them from cutting through crosswalks.

Photo: Chicago Department of Transportation

According to CDOT, left turns can be dangerous because motorists will execute them at a higher rate of speed than right turns.  In addition, the car’s window frame may act as a blind spot preventing motorist from seeing pedestrians in the crosswalk.  CDOT claims that since 2017, motorists who were making left-hand turns were involved in 40 percent of crashes where a pedestrian was seriously injured or killed.  In test intersections with safety features, CDOT found that 95 percent of drivers yielded to pedestrians, compared to 80 percent before the traffic-safety features were installed.

CDOT failed to comment on how many pedestrians are walking the sidewalks looking at their cell phones without paying attention to traffic at intersections.

The following 15 intersections will receive left-turn safety features in 2022:

    N. Ashland Ave. & W. Wilson Ave.

    N. Ashland Ave. & W. Sunnyside Ave.

    N. Ashland Ave. & W. Montrose Ave.

    N. Ashland Ave. & W. Cullom Ave.

    W. Grand Ave. & N. Austin Ave.

    W. Division Ave. & N. Rockwell St.

    W. Chicago Ave. & N. Leavitt St.

    W. Chicago Ave. & N. Oakley Ave.

    W. Chicago Ave. & N. Paulina St.

    W. 63rd St. & S. Kedzie Ave.

    W. 63rd St. & S. California Ave.

    W. 63rd St. & S. Western Ave.

    W. 71st St. & S. Halsted St.

    W. 71st St & S. Ashland Ave.

    W. 71st St & S. Damen Ave.

Photo: Ryan from Toronto, Canada, CC BY 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

Chicago: 14-Year-Old Girl Shot

By The Chicago Times Staff

September 15, 2022

CHICAGO – A 14-year-old girl was shot in the arm early Sunday in the Back of the Yards neighborhood.

According to police, victim was in the passenger seat of a vehicle in the 4400 block of South Wood Street when gunfire erupted near the vehicle around 4 am.

The victim was taken to an area hospital and is listed in good condition.