Chicago Police Head Seeks Help After 100 Shootings

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Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown called for other criminal justice entities to give his department “a little bit of help” in combating gun violence after a weekend that saw more than 100 people shot and several children murdered, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. Brown said the city’s violence was largely driven by violent felons who were released from jail too soon. “At the end of the day, our endgame strategy is to arrest violent felons, but if violent felons are getting right out of jail, we need cooperation and collaboration with other partners within the criminal justice system,” Brown said. Brown’s predecessor, Eddie Johnson, made the same plea many times during his 3 ½ years leading the department. Asked what drove the weekend bloodshed, Brown said: “Gangs, guns and drugs and not enough time spent in jail for violent felons.”

When 10 people were killed and 39 others were shot over Memorial Day weekend, Mayor Lori Mayor Lightfoot condemned the “bloodbath” and called it a “fail” by her newly appointed police superintendent. Lightfoot was asked what she would call a Father’s Day weekend that ended with 14 homicides that included children ages 3 and 13. She mentioned parts of the criminal justice “eco-system” sidelined during the coronavirus pandemic that are still not fully back online. “We still have some concerns on the part of the county about how many people can safely be in Cook County Jail. We still have some concern about bond decisions. Our federal partners are still not back in full complement. I don’t believe grand juries have been reconvened. And many federal agents are still not back doing the work that they normally do,” Lightfoot said. With extra scrutiny being paid to law enforcement in the wake of the death of George Floyd, some officers are taking a less hands-on approach.

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