Streeterville residents plead for more police, better communication in wake of mob assaults
Loop North News

CRIME & SAFETY

(Above) Aerial view of Michigan Avenue from John Hancock Center.

22-Jan-19 – The teens and young adults arrive at CTA stations in River North but end up in nearby Streeterville, where fights break out, people are assaulted, and stores along the Magnificent Mile are robbed.

The latest incidents occurred on December 29. Between 5:00 p.m. and 7:12 p.m., as many as 60 people were involved in assaults of CTA riders, fights among themselves, shoplifting at a Mag Mile store, and disturbances at Water Tower Place.

Streeterville Organization of Active Residents has had enough, urging city officials to send more police officers to their neighborhood.

Additional enforcement is “imperative,” says SOAR in a letter sent on Monday to 2nd Ward Alderman Brian Hopkins, 42nd Ward Alderman Brendan Reilly, and 18th police district commander Daniel O’Shea.

“The activities of these young adults have caused significant concern for SOAR membership and others with a vested interest in Streeterville. While the spring and summer months have been the most detrimental to our community, criminal activity has occurred almost any night of the year.”

Vashon Jordan Jr.

The 800-member organization has noted the teens and young adults have “mastered the use of social media” to coordinate their plans – and such efforts, says SOAR, “seem to have outpaced the city’s ability to maintain a safe environment.”

Criminal activity, according to the organization, has affected not only residents of Streeterville but also students, employees of major medical institutions, customers of commercial businesses, and tourists. They have seen the activity spread past Michigan Avenue to Navy Pier and nearby parks and beaches.

(Left) Frame from video by Vashon Jordan Jr. of a CTA Red Line train on December 29, 2018.

SOAR says it wants to meet with Hopkins, Reilly, O’Shea, and representatives of Chicago Police Department’s public transit unit to discuss the situation and begin planning before more incidents occur.

They also suggest police “explore better monitoring of social media” and increase its presence at nearby CTA stations during peak travel times.

Another idea is for SOAR to “begin a dialog” with community leaders from neighborhoods where the offending teens and young adults live.

“Perhaps an open dialog between community leaders and government officials can be a beneficial step to help to resolve these ongoing problems,” says SOAR.

Five people have been arrested so far in the December 29 incidents. Among the victims was a 28-year-old man who suffered broken bones, a fractured eye socket, abrasions, and other injuries as he was punched and kicked by a large group at the CTA Red Line station at State & Chicago.

By Steven Dahlman | Loop North News | sdahlman@loopnorth.com

Published 22-Jan-19 4:26 AM

Loop North News

FREE WEEKLY EMAIL UPDATE

What’s news in the Loop and Near North neighborhoods of downtown Chicago.

Signup for our weekly email. No ads and no charge. Just enter your email address here...

Number of subscribers:
See this week’s update

More stories


Thursday
Structural Engineers Association of Illinois Summer Happy Hour. Stop by to catch up with friends and peers, meet new members, and introduce fellow engineers to SEAOI. Board and committee members will be on hand to answer questions about the organization. Enjoy free appetizers, fascinating conversation, fantastic raffle prizes, and a free round on SEAOI. Please RSVP and bring a friend. 5:30-7:30 p.m., Tradition Gastro Pub, 160 North Franklin Street. Map. More info.

Thursday
ACTIVATE: Scene Change, Chicago Loop Alliance’s next ACTIVATE event, transforms a hidden alley through the art of lighting and set design in celebration of the City of Chicago’s Year of Chicago Theatre. Guests will experience interactive tech, DJs, live performers, body painting, and more – all in the alley behind one of the Loop’s iconic theaters. 5:00-10:00 p.m., Auditorium Theatre alley, 416 South Michigan Avenue. Guests who RSVP in advance receive a free drink ticket, with additional beverages available for purchase on site. Map. More info.
More events

Biggest Gainers & Losers

BOEING CO.
339.99 8.24

JBT CORPORATION
105.44 3.26

AON PLC
193.17 1.84

JONES LANG LASALLE INC.
137.23 1.72

Downtown Chicago Stocks