Posts tagged "Cook County"

One in 6 hungry in Cook County, food stamp cuts in Senate Farm Bill could make it worse

One in 6 hungry in Cook County, food stamp cuts in Senate Farm Bill could make it worse
Most people think those who are food insecure live below or near the national poverty level of $23,550 a year for a family of four. But the demographics of Cook County residents who can’t afford enough food to have an active lifestyle or meet their health needs vary widely–and could include your neighbor. A recent... Read more »

Will mandatory prison time for gun possession charges make Chicago safer?

The debate over how to stop the bloodshed in Chicago headed south last week as Illinois lawmakers took up a bill that would put more people with guns behind bars–for longer. There is a logic behind HB 2265, which was introduced by state Rep. Michael Zalewski, a Democrat from west suburban Riverside. The argument: that... Read more »

A behind-the-scenes look at Cook County public defenders' heavy caseloads

A behind-the-scenes look at Cook County public defenders' heavy caseloads
It’s been 50 years since the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that anyone facing criminal charges has a right to an attorney even if they can’t afford one. The decision came out of a case called Gideon vs. Wainwright and was settled in 1963. During that era, the criminal courts looked a lot different than they... Read more »
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Cook County leads the nation in exonerations while price of justice grows

Cook County leads the nation in exonerations while price of justice grows
We might need to add $10.25 million to Chicago’s long tab of legal settlements paid out to people who’ve been wrongfully convicted. The city’s council’s Finance Committee on Tuesday approved the payment to Alton Logan, a man who spent 26 years behind bars for murder while police swept evidence under the rug that he was innocent, the... Read more »

Johns get fines, sex workers get felonies

Johns get fines, sex workers get felonies
A few weeks ago, I got a press release from the Cook County Sheriff’s office about their Columbus Day crackdown on ‘Johns’ - men who buy sex. They arrested 94 men that day, part of an effort to end demand for prostitution. The  men got citations, weapons charges, possession charges and even arrest warrants. None... Read more »

VIDEO: Chicago police arrest scores more teenagers than other big cities

VIDEO: Chicago police arrest scores more teenagers than other big cities
Over the past few months, I’ve been sitting in on a drug case at the criminal courthouse at 26th Street and California Avenue. There is no high-profile defendant on trial. Just a teenager from Chicago’s West Side who got tripped up in a police sting for allegedly selling $80 worth of heroin to undercover officers. At 17,... Read more »
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No 8s: Is not accepting voucher holders discrimination or avoiding red tape headaches?

No 8s: Is not accepting voucher holders discrimination or avoiding red tape headaches?
A few weeks ago, we featured a series on housing voucher discrimination in Cook County, with perspectives from tenants, landlords and a look at a piece of legislation designed to fight it that’s in front of the Cook County Board. Here’s another installment of No 8s, this time with perspectives from housing authority officials and... Read more »

What's Up This Week: Our latest investigation on crime; immigrants and domestic violence; and Kelly's departure

What's Up This Week: Our latest investigation on crime; immigrants and domestic violence; and Kelly's departure
Slammed. Crime is down, but a growing number of teenagers in Chicago are being tried on adult felony charges. In 2011, 15 percent more 17-year-olds were convicted in adult courts in Cook County than in 2007. Look out for our latest investigation in the November/December issue. Undocumented Life. Undocumented women who suffer abuse can face a difficult choice –... Read more »

No 8s: Commissioners divided over outlawing voucher discrimination in Cook County

No 8s: Commissioners divided over outlawing voucher discrimination in Cook County
This week, we’ve been looking at a proposed ordinance in front of the Cook County board that would prevent suburban landlords from discriminating against subsidized housing voucher holders. We’ve talked to tenants who have faced such discrimination, landlords who say it’ll create financial headaches for their business, and advocates who say it’s necessary to help... Read more »
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No 8s: Landlords say vouchers cause business headaches they shouldn't be forced to take on

When Bill Planek’s property management company took over 927 S. Wesley Ave. in Oak Park, he didn’t renew Gale Riley’s lease. It wasn’t because she was late on her rent, in fact she’d never missed a payment. It also wasn’t because she was messy, noisy or damaged the apartment. It was that she paid her... Read more »