Train motorman warns of CTA iPhone thefts

In light of my report yesterday on big increase in thefts and other crime on the CTA, this little tidbit from CTA Tattler reader Matthew is very interesting:

I was riding the Brown Line home from work yesterday at around 5:15 pm
and the motorman made a rather interesting announcement over the

He said: "Please keep all electronic devices out of the
view of the public."  I thought I misheard him, but then he said it
again, adding, "We have had complaints recently of several iPhones
being stolen."

It would certainly be interesting if this becomes a standard announcement.



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  • "It would certainly be interesting if this becomes a standard announcement."

    Like I said yesterday, the announcement, "Violators will be arrested." Not "violators are subject to arrest."

    As AB pointed out, the first is not likely.

  • In reply to jack:

    ...And as discussed yesterday, the problem with "violators will be arrested" is there's just not enough police manpower to make the arrests.

  • In reply to KevinO’Neil:

    Even though you said it four times, I think that Scooter pointed out that if you get a couple of the repeat offenders, that will be a deterrent.

    Also, do you have the numbers of how many Chicago Police are on transit detail and what are they doing? Have they cleared all the assaults and thefts? Or are they merely reporting the numbers and sitting on their duffs?

  • In reply to KevinO’Neil:

    For more current CTA crime reports, Everyblock Chicago's reports are usually 10 days behind, I like the website.

    For instance at 3:30 this morning a man was robbed at the North/Clybourn station (cell phone and wallet stolen)and at 6:15 last nite a male passenger was followed from the Wilson L station and robbed a few blocks away (iPhone and bus pass taken)

  • In reply to KevinO’Neil:

    Ironically, those most subject to theft of their fancy toys were most likely oblivious to the announcement.

  • In reply to KevinO’Neil:

    That's what concealed carry is for.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    Great idea Darkwing - riders really should conceal their iPhones and iPods when they are using them. Adn very easy to do if just listening to music on shuffle!

  • In reply to darkwing:

    An advantage of taking the train instead of driving was the ability to get work done to/from home. Unfortunately, that is no longer the case. It's sad that I have to ride the train in fear each day after being assaulted in January 2010 and after an attempted robbery in November (day before Thanksgiving). I might feel safer if I was allowed to conceal & carry a small snub-nose revolver with me on the train.

    I always see a large police presence at the Clinton blue line stop (between 2 and 4 officers) but only once have I ever seen them on the train.

  • In reply to bikerspade:

    Just out of curiosity (and this goes to others who think concealed carry is the answer), what would you have done if you had your revolver with you?

    Would you have shot the perp on a crowded train? If not, then what - would you have just threatened him/her? What about when the perp pulls his/her gun back on you? Or is this just all a deterrent in your mind?

    I hear these benefits of concealed carry touted all the time, but I don't think I've ever heard anyone explain how their behavior would change in that situation...

  • In reply to aaronjbrown:

    You're failing to consider the change in behavior of the criminals themselves.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    No...I considered that: "Or is this just all a deterrent in your mind?"

    So that's the answer - it's strictly a deterrent? I'd be interested to know how well this actually works, especially since it doesn't seem like a particularly credible threat.

  • In reply to aaronjbrown:

    According to your comment below, you seem to assume that lawfully armed citizens are either cowards or potential murderers on hair triggers. You need to move past your own prejudices before you can consider the issue with a clear head, regardless of your eventual decision.

  • In reply to darkwing:

    That's not true - I don't think anybody's a coward or murderer.

    I just think that (a) talking about using a gun is easier than doing it and (b) carrying a gun on a crowded train increases the likelihood that somebody would get accidentally shot.

    If you think this would make the world safer from iPod thieves, so be it. I'm just not sure that's the case.

  • In reply to aaronjbrown:

    Would I shoot the perp? if circumstances necessitated me to then yes. It's a constitutional right, Chicago law be damned.

  • In reply to stephenw235:

    It's easy to talk a big game on the web, especially when you don't have to face the potential consequences (and I don't mean "Chicago law"). Pulling a gun on a train/platform is extremely dangerous, both to you (what if the perp has a gun as well) and to innocent bystanders.

    Maybe you're willing to take that risk in the real world, but I'd rather not be around when you go all Bernie Goetz.

  • In reply to bikerspade:

    I've seen cops (real ones, not private security) on the Red Line subway platforms. I always go over and sit or stand by them! There were several of them one time a few weeks ago, and they had a Belgian Shepherd with them--like a smaller version of a German Shepherd. (I found out by asking.) The group split up and some of them got on a train.

  • In reply to jack:

    Not an intelligent thing to say.
    Immediately after that announcement, people felt whatever pocket their phone or player was in to make sure it was there, if they weren't using it.
    The same thing happens when an announcement is made that pickpockets are about & you should watch your wallet. Everyone pats their pocket where the wallet is, thus telling pickpockets where to get one.

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