Chicago alderman demands Mayor Lightfoot fire top cop David Brown as violence surges
CHICAGO - In addition to seeing more than 100 people shot – 18 of them killed – Chicago’s deadliest weekend so far this year also brought political consequences for Mayor Lori Lightfoot and her hand-picked police superintendent.
South Side Alderman Tony Beale (9th Ward) asked Governor JB Pritzker to send help.
"We need to bring in the National Guard to secure the perimeter of downtown to work along with the police to free up more officers to come from downtown back into the communities," Beale told FOX 32 News.
Mayor Lightfoot, long at loggerheads with Beale, declined to respond directly to his proposal. But she did ridicule him and journalists who report on lawmakers she considers City Council troublemakers.
"There are some unfortunately in the City Council who don't want to work collaboratively," Lightfoot told a news conference. "(They) don't come to the briefings, work with the police department, but do like to grandstand and unfortunately you all like to cover it."
While the Fourth of July weekend is often the deadliest of the year in Chicago, the bloodshed this past weekend was the worst in about a decade, prompting another frequent critic to demand Lightfoot fire Police Supt. David Brown.
"Brown refuses to do anything more than what she says," complained Ald. Ray Lopez (15th Ward). "And for that reason, we cannot continue down this path. He must be fired."
The mayor immediately fired back.
"I don't think anything that comes out of Ald. Lopez's mouth is really worth my time or consideration," Lightfoot responded.
Also joining the debate after the weekend’s horrifying bloodshed was Cook County State's Attorney Kim Foxx. The mayor and Supt. Brown have repeatedly complained that too many offenders are being too quickly released, suggesting many commit new, serious crimes.
Foxx on Tuesday tweeted a response.
"Finger-pointing instead of talking honestly about the violence plaguing our city doesn’t help bring solutions that make our communities safer. It starts with apprehending those who pull the trigger; police must make an arrest before a case reaches the courthouse door."
More than 2,000 people have now been shot in Chicago this year. The mayor promised over the next few days to unveil new help for crime victims and witnesses. Experts say the criminal justice system’s dismal record of failing to protect crime witnesses may be the biggest reason so few are willing to testify in court.