an email announcement about last night's shootings:
"Although the summer in Uptown has been relatively quiet, last night at the corner of Wilson and Sheridan, there were gang-related shootings that occurred around 6:00 p.m. outside of the Uptown Baptist Church. From my conversation with 19th District Police Commander Voulgaris, there were five victims. Four are in critical condition and one in good condition.
Three of the victims had known gang affiliations from the west and south sides, and another one, also from the west side, was with the three. The fifth victim is a man from Uptown and is believed to be homeless. Police were quickly on the scene and have three persons of interest in custody. The police were able to recover quality video footage from both the police camera located at that corner and from local businesses.
Following this incident, three police cars will be stationed in three of Uptown's "hot spots," 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. As we did with the Weiss Plaza area, which has been very quiet since June, I will be working with Commander Voulgaris, the foot patrol officers in this area, Community Justice Center, CAPS Beat Facilitators, local block clubs, social services and local businesses to come together and implement a plan to make this area safer.
The next CAPS meeting for the 1914 CAPS Beat where this took place is Wednesday, September 11 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Clarendon Park Fieldhouse, 4501 N. Clarendon. Please attend to voice your concerns to the police and to find out what you can do to help make the neighborhood safer. As always, if you see something suspicious, do not hesitate and call 911."
UU Note: For those who want 24/7 police saturation everywhere in Uptown, it is not going to happen. The city is broke and the police department is understaffed, which is common knowledge among the gangbangers and the police themselves. The CPD is doing the best it can -- in our opinion, a stellar job -- with the limited resources it has. The South and West Sides are far more violent than Uptown, so that's where the resources (i.e., police officers) go.
As the email states, there are other solutions. But there are not hundreds of officers sitting around waiting to be deployed. There just aren't. We don't know where Cappleman and Voulgaris found the officers to do three round-the-clock shifts, but it's seriously impressive and shows a strong commitment to stemming violence here. Because some other area is now short three round-the-clock details. Those officers didn't get pulled out of a magician's hat or from the Extra Police Room.
The undermanning of the CPD is, in our opinion, Chicago's most critical issue and should be addressed before anything else. Safety first, Mr. Mayor and Mr. Police Superintendent. Hire more cops, enough cops, and make it your first priority.
Another UU Note: We have heard (from several sources who have been very reliable in the past) that at least one, possibly two, of the victims of yesterday's shooting are being kept alive by life support. We won't speculate further. There are so many people who were hurt by yesterday's events, and our hearts especially go out to the homeless man who was there for a meal and ended up being shot.