Violent crime wave alert in UIC community

Our community has been victimized recently by a wide spread violent, and non-violent crime wave, as have many other Chicago communities including the South Loop, the West Loop, the Near North Side, and Lincoln Park. A number of people have also reported seeing, or stopping criminals from stealing packages left on door steps in our community. Please be careful, be alert of your surroundings when out doors, and make sure your home is secured. Please report suspicious activity by calling 911.

In the past couple of weeks the following incidents occurred, and these are just the ones C4C has been able to learn about; and there are likely many more, so if you have been the victim of a crime recently, please contact us:

Saturday, December 2 between 6:30 – 7:00 p.m. a valet parking cars for the annual Christmas Concert at the Shrine of Our Lady of Pompeii was the subject of an armed car jacking. This is the oldest continuing Italian American church in Chicago, and it brings visitors, and worshipers from all over the Chicagoland area, and beyond. Being car jacked does not say welcome to our community.

Saturday, Dec 2 at 12:30 a.m. Burglary: attempted forcible entry on the 800 block of South Bishop St. If someone is home this is really an attempted home invasion, which if the perpetrator is armed can be particularly dangerous.

The following three armed robberies were reported on the nightly news recently.

The robbers were described as three-to-five black men, thought to be between the ages of 18 and 25, standing between 5-foot-6 and 6-foot, and weighing between 145 and 160 pounds, police said.

Dec. 2  about 2 a.m. in the 1200 block of West Taylor;
Dec. 2 about 6:45 p.m in the 800 block of South Lytle; and
Dec. 2 at 9:22 p.m. Wednesday in the 900 block of South Lytle.

On Saturday, December 9 around 6 p.m. there was a carjacking on 1400 block of west Lexington St. A woman was violently wrestled to the ground reportedly by four black males, and her car was stolen. It is unknown if the alleged criminals were armed.

C4C worked with former 012th District Commander Melissa Staples, Related Midwest, the CHA, and the Mayor’s Office to successfully reduce gun violence in our community in the past. The program was so successful she wanted to implement it City-wide at CHA sites, but she, and her top Chicago Police Department colleagues encountered some bureaucratic resistance. Unfortunately we lost her exceptional leadership of the 012th District for some time. Now that we have new, effective leadership at the 012th District we will work with our Commander, and the Chief of UIC’s Police Department, as well as other institutions to continue that work.

A former employee of the Illinois Medical District responsible for developing a security plan for the IMD with law enforcement has reported extensive holes in security for this important institution that need to be addressed, and there are issues with effective lease enforcement, and other property management with other subsidized developments in our community, including the Barbara Jean Wright Court Apartments that we are addressing with HUD. This work is ongoing, and painfully slow due to institutional inertia, and corruption in Chicago that we all read about seemingly daily in our newspapers. This corruption negatively impacts our access to high quality public education, public safety, and other important aspects of our quality of life.

If you have any additional information about crime, or suggestions you believe may be useful, please contact us.