Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Maryville’s Broken Window Theory

A reader writes: "Neighbors couldn't help but notice that the annual return of the homeless brigade occurred last night at the vacant Columbus-Maryville building at 750 W. Montrose. Neighbors also noticed broken glass and an opened window in that same building this morning. One can’t help but wonder what that patrolman that parks adjacent to that building all night does with his time. Same question goes for the Columbus-Maryville building caretaker who didn’t notice a thing all day. Neighbors called police to the scene at 7:30 this evening to secure the property."


  1. I have said this numerous times on this site. The police can not do anything on private property without a owner/agent for the property on scene. No arrests can be make from ananonymous 911 call. Or a concerned neighbor's 911 call. The responsibly is on the property.

  2. I've had a different experience. Years ago, three kids broke into the then empty duplex in our building. When I spotted them and called 911, the police went into the duplex and arrested the kids. We couldn't get in touch with the developer or his real estate agent for a day.

  3. I forgot to add owner to the last sentence of my post. It should have said The responsibly is on the property owner.

    Also if you work downtown head to the Chicago Tea Party.

    At noon go to Kluczynski Federal Building Plaza, 230 S. Dearborn (those at Daley Plaza will be marching over to the Federal Building at 12:15)

  4. Nadmenny, you're not quite right. The police don't have as much freedom on private property as they do elsewhere. Trespassing, I don't think they can do much about. But I'm pretty sure they can arrest you for break and enter...

  5. Candice, you're not up on your "Clockwork Orange" language.

    Nadmenny Millicent, whom you are telling what a policeman can and cannot do, is a Chicago cop.

  6. Any time someone is arrested someone has to be the complainant/victim. The police can only be the complainant for a few laws and then only on the public way, park property, or CTA property. And with the CTA a CTA employee is the complainant for most crimes.

    On private property an owner/agent must sign a complaint and go to court. Once the arrest is made the officer has no further envolvement in the case.

    If an offender is caught for burglary (breaking and entering) a owner/agent needs to be located for any chages to be filed. If no can be contacted the offender will be released without being charged. Someone HAS to represent the property.

  7. Maybe this will make it easier to understand. A police officer can only represent the state (IL or city) as the victim.

    All other victims (persons or property)is represented by him/herself with the help of the State's Attorney or Corporation Counsel.

  8. I said "arrest", did I not? I didn't say that they could convict you... IINAL, and I don't care enough to research that point, since I'm not planning on doing any breaking and entering in the near future.

    They could arrest you for trespassing, too, for that matter, but it wouldn't necessarily be legal...

  9. Maybe this will make it easier to understand: "The police can not do anything on private property without a owner/agent for the property on scene." False. I know that much :)

  10. Candice, please give me an example where the police have the right to go onto private property and make an arrest with out a victim or warrant

  11. To answer Resident. Juveniles are another story. When they are arrested there really is no complainant per say. That's why it's a big deal when the state wants charge them as adults. Juvenile court system is different from the adult system

    More for Candice. A little scenario.

    Neighbor 1 gets into a altercation with neighbor 2. Neighbor 2 pushes neighbor 1 to the ground.

    Both neighbor go to their respective homes. Neighbor 1 calls the police. The police arrive and speak with neighbor 1. They go to neighbor 2's home and see him/her in the window. But refuses to open the door.

    All the police can legally do is take a report naming neighbor 2 as the offender. And advice neighbor 1 which court to go to to get a arrest warrant. Even with a warrant neighbor 2 can only be arrested outside his/her home out in public.

    As for trespassing do you think its OK for the police to come into your backyard and arrest your friends based on a anonymous 911 call or a neighbor saying they don't belong, without your involvement.

    That's the law. Private property is protected by the Constitution.

    I can not believe your statement that "They could arrest you for trespassing, too, for that matter, but it wouldn't necessarily be legal..."

    I'm sure Shiller's son would like to hear about any arrests like that.

    Truman Hi and thanks for the props

  12. I live across the street from this building. I see and fight to move the homeless out from around it. I see them drinking and they use the bathroom infront or my children. Its created a unsafe and unhealthy condition. I called the police and they claim its private property and they have to report it. I called the alderwomen and she says nothing. She really don`t care. I clled the Sisters at Desplaines and they said they would contact building management which they never do. I went into the main building across the street. I reported it to a security guard who always has his gfeet up on the dest and watches TV there in a T-Shirt. I told him she sould walk over and throw them off his property or call the police and he says his boss said leave them there. Go there and report it. H edoes take your name and where you live. I think its a very unsafe and unhealthy condition and why does the owners allow this to happen. The alderwomen gives permits for parking so why can she not report it. I am sick of seeing them all sumer drinking and yelling in my nice block............

  13. Next time you see street people or unsafe conditions or unhealthy ones report them to security in the main building. He always is sitting in a chair sleeping or watching TV in the west lobby enterence in the main building you can get into through the parking lot. I been going there alot and will continue. Summer is near and I don`t want my children exposed to street people who hang out in the rear of thier building doing drugs, drinking and going to the bathroom in front of them as they play in the park......Walk inside and tell security and ask him who else you can contact to let him do his job and keep the property safe and clean.............