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Warm weather spike in Chicago crime brushes Lincoln Park


I am a student journalist at DePaul University and an enthusiastic blogger for Lincoln Park Now. I am interested in community journalism, new media, and volunteering. My number one passion? Writing, of course!

Summertime temperatures bring the usual flurry of backyard barbecues and impromptu trips to North Avenue beach for most Lincoln Park residents, but the ugly correlation between warm weather and street violence has reared its head toward the neighborhood in the past couple of weeks as well.

lincoln park crime scene.jpg

Have the recent sexual assault and shooting in the Lincoln Park neighborhood made you feel like your own back yard is a crime scene? Photo by flickr user alancleaver_2000.

According to a report on, the Lincoln Park neighborhood is on alert as police seek a man who broke into a woman's home on May 23 and sexually assaulted the victim.

The community alert describes the offender as a black man between the ages 23 and 30, 6'2" with a husky build and a medium complexion, and dressed in all black, according to the FOX report. He wore gloves and concealed his face during the attack.

Also, the Chicago Sun-Times reported on a gang-related shooting that took place in Lincoln Park late last Monday night.

The Sun-Times report says that the 19-year-old man was shot in the leg and taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital according to the Chicago Fire Department Media Affairs Chief Kevin MacGreggor, but that a police News Affairs release reported that the victim was shot in the groin and the chest.

I called Belmont Area Detectives and spoke with Sargent Jacobs, and he said that no suspects are in custody for either of these Lincoln Park crimes.

Anyone with information related to either crime should contact Belmont Area Detectives at (773) 744-8261

I would like to take the opportunity to remind all our readers that they should be ultra-careful at all times, not just when there are community alerts in the neighborhood.

If you are out late at night, stay in well-lit areas and do your best to stay in groups. Make sure your doors and windows are securely locked at all times.

If you think that your doors or windows need better locks, install them yourself if you are a homeowner, or ask your landlord to install them if you rent. In my own apartment in Lakeview, my roommates and I requested that our landlord install a deadbolt that can only be accessed from the inside, and our landlord was more than willing to go that extra length to ensure our safety.

You might also devise a safety plan with some of your neighbors, like a phone tree system you could implement when something shady happens in the neighborhood.

Check your addresss on frequently to stay up-to-date on the crimes that are happening right around your home.

And use this blog as a place to come forward and discuss issues of crime and violence in your neighborhood! Feel free to comment your reactions to these recent crimes.

Let's talk about it!



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secondcity911 said:


Residents in other neighborhoods are arming themselves. After Officer Wortham was killed in Chatham and an 80-year-old war veteran killed a home invader in Humboldt Park, people have decided that they need to protect themselves. Would be criminals are aware of this. They will target areas they deem less likely to have weapons. Lincoln Park is one of those neighborhoods. Until all law-abiding citizens decide they have a right to arm themselves, criminals will continue to seek their prey in unarmed neighborhoods.

jennkloc said:


That is an interesting perspective. Although I find it hard to believe that everyone arming himself is the only way to prevent crime in your neighborhood! What else could work?

secondcity911 said:


Lots of things have been tried. From the gun ban to CAPS. From specialized police units to blue light cameras. Short of putting a cop on every corner, I don't know what else could work. The only program I have ever heard of that reduces gun violence is CEASEFIRE. But that is more for preventing gang wars.

jennkloc said:


I know that there are some places in the world where everyone does carry a gun and there's basically no violence. In theory I suppose that makes sense, because who is going to attack someone if you know that the other person has a gun?

Personally, though, I'm a big ol' softy pacifist, and so I find it hard to rally behind arming everyone as a way to prevent street violence. Even late at night or in not so great neighborhoods, I don't assume that I assume that I should feel threatened by people I pass on the street. Carrying a gun around for personal protection just seems really untrusting to me, and I am pretty much trusting to a fault.

I also feel like our society has so much violence in the media, etc., that a system where everyone is armed wouldn't necessarily work out the way it does in other parts of the world, ya know?

I definitely don't have a solution to the problem, either, but it's nice that we can talk about it.

secondcity911 said:


Well, I don't really think everyone should be armed. I just think that if everyone had a right to be armed then the bad guys wouldn't know who was armed and who wasn't. It would make robbing, raping and mugging a much more dangerous line of work. I wish we had less violence too. It's just that some of the softer approaches haven't worked so far. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to discuss this subject. Maybe thru talking about society's problems someone will see a solution.

jennkloc said:


The constitution gives everyone the right to be armed, I guess just not a lot of people take advantage of that right. Or maybe they do and they're just quiet about it? I think it's much more common to have a gun in your home for protection against invaders (or sometimes just because its an heirloom) than it is to carry one on your person at all times.

I think that the only kind of approach that would actually have a long term impact on reducing street violence would have to be really comprehensive and include better education systems, more economic opportunities for everyone, access to information about anger management and other mental health related issues, classroom instruction for children about conflict resolution and forgiveness (that's my wildest dream--imagine how incredible that would be!) and just a bunch of solutions like that to solve the problem indirectly.

I'm not sure if there is a way to directly and immediately stop street violence. That's probably why it happens so frequently :/

secondcity911 said:


Handguns are illegal in Chicago. However the US Supreme Court is about to overturn that law. What the Constitution gave us, the city took away.

BrokenRoad said:


The Constitution gives Americans the right to bear arms. Nowhere in the constitution is the right to carry concealed handguns. Handguns were/are created specifically to kill humans.

Savi said:

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Aren't "bearing arms" and "carrying concealed handguns" essentially the same thing? What's the point of only protecting yourself at home while being vulnerable away from home?

Savi said:

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I would add "access to bare necessities" (and perhaps some basic luxuries too) to your list. Although I think the best way for that to happen is with the implementation of a resource based economy, something I've expounded for quite some time now.

I heartily agree with you on conflict resolution. So many people have no idea how to do that. Every time I see people arguing about something (and getting nowhere with it), I usually do my best to explain how useless that is, and how they can focus specifically on solving the problem at hand without getting sidetracked with egoistic taunts and the like.

Savi said:

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Arming citizens is a fairly logical response, but ultimately it's not a solution. It's just patchwork. The problem can't be solved unless you remove the desire/compulsion for people to commit the crimes in the first place. But this would involve a social movement of epic proportions. There isn't much a single neighborhood could do about this problem. It would take drastic, fundamental change on a global scale to reduce or eliminate this type of behavior.

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