South Side residents weigh in on who Chicago's next top cop should be
CHICAGO - Youth trouble and dangerous carjackings will have to be top priorities for the next Chicago Police superintendent.
The public was able to weigh in on who should take the spot as the next top cop at a forum Wednesday night at St. Sabina Church on the South Side.
Some residents gave recommendations and names of current CPD employees who they think will be the best for the job. Others in attendance made it clear they want someone from the inside who knows the residents and the city.
"Officers don’t know the Black youth at all. They sit there and just arrest us for guns and drugs, and they really don’t know us. They just attack us," said Marion Thomas.
"The superintendent needs to have respect for Black people and that begins with a knowing of who we really are. Drop the stereotypes," said Dr. Rhonda Sherrod.
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This was the second of four public meetings, and the only one on the city's South Side.
A hot topic for the newly formed Community Commission for Public Safety and Accountability is the teen gatherings downtown. Another gathering is expected and advertised on social media for this weekend.
"We put the call out for 500 men, and we are going to be with them Saturday downtown," said Matt Brandon with Operation Neighborhood Safety. "Whoever our superintendent is, can only be as strong as the community that stands behind them."
The top cop application process comes to an end on May 7th and shortly after, Mayor-elect Brandon Johnson will choose from a list of three candidates.
Some don’t agree with that selection process.
"The police superintendent, cannot, I repeat cannot, do his job if his hands is tied by the mayor," said Darryl Smith.
There are two more opportunities for the public to voice their opinion: a virtual forum will be held on April 25th and a meeting on the North Side will be held on May 4th.