Chicago homicides, shootings, and other violent crime are up. Arrests, gun recoveries, and other indicators of police activity are down, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. A key alderman said Police Superintendent Jody Weis has “made mistakes. This is the residual effect of that. He’s got good intentions. But it’s hard to see anything positive about his reign.” Added Police Committee Chairman Isaac Carothers: “When you change all the commanders at once — and don’t give yourself a chance to learn from experienced people — that gives a jolt to the system. Police officers have told me they don’t feel the enthusiasm they once had. They’re doing their jobs. But nothing beyond that. They don’t have the confidence that he’s supporting them.”
Weis said he believes he has a dedicated, hardworking force and that he has seen a shift recently. “We know what to do, we know our domain, and we know our territory,” Weis said. “2009 is going to be a year of results. This is a year I have to deliver. From this day forward, people are going to have to perform.” Weis also pointed to a decline in excessive-force complaints and election night as successes. “We were on a worldwide stage that night, and it was an absolute, 100 percent success.” Still, homicides jumped 15 percent and shootings increased 17 percent in 2008. Shots-fired calls jumped 33 percent; gang disturbance calls went up 18 percent.