Make judges ride the Green Line

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Pan-handler Clarence Ervin encourages me to "keep taking pictures and send me the pictures" on the CTA's Green Line Wednesday. Ervin is constantly getting in trouble with the law, has been arrested numerous times. He can be verbally and physically abusive at times. (Phil Velasquez, Chicago Tribune / February 2, 2010)

CTA riders already have to put up with enough. But this mope who has been arrested 178 times panhandling on the CTA Green Line takes the cake. And whatever else he can intimidate you into "giving" him.

Some point of law allows judges to release him on his own recognizance (after which he often doesn't show up for his court appearance, which should be reason enough to impose high bail). 

Some postings following the Tribune story miss the point: The first concern ought to be the riders who should not have to put up with intimidation and threats of violence. This is not a discussion about "homelessness," "institutionalization," and the rest of the political issues that always are provoked by such stories. The police seem to be doing their jobs in arresting this idiot, time after time. It's the judges who have some explaining to do, and perhaps they'd like to do it on a Green Line train while they're being harassed by this guy.


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  • If he wanted to panhandle profitably, he should use any other line but the Green. Hence, he should be committed for psychiatric evaluation.

    Sort of like the report in the Chicago Bar-Tender about suing the homeless, if the people are judgment proof there is no point in releasing them on bail, even if personal recognizance. You would think that even if the panhandling is not enough to hold him, the bail violations should be.

    Of course, if Tom Dart or the psychiatric authorities can't afford to house him, maybe that is what is motivating the judges in police court.

  • Make the politicians and their families ride too.

  • In reply to dude:

    That's a good one. I'd like to see Daley ride to say, Kennedy King College, or "Ray's Music Exchange" on 47th, and walk around the neighborhood. Without bodyguards.

    Even riding the Red Line north segment and staying away from the panhandlers and people described in the CTA Tattler might be an experience.

  • In reply to jack:

    I realized I just goofed. I should have said "trying to stay away" or maybe more definitely "encountering."

  • In reply to jack:

    When somebody finally kills him, or is killed in an encounter with him; their lawyers will be able to SUE CTA and the city for every phucing thing they've got.

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