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If the guy’s behind bars, there’s no retaliation, so no mass shooting

Tuesday, Sep 24, 2013

* From a Mayor Rahm Emanuel press release…

“The men and women of the Chicago Police Department once again showed why they are the nation’s best by moving quickly to arrest four individuals, including the shooters, for their roles in the gun violence in the Back of the Yards neighborhood last week. But great police work is only part of a successful strategy to keep our streets safe. We also need laws that reflect our values when it comes to gun crimes and carry real consequences for illegal gun possession.

“We need a three-year minimum penalty for illegally carrying a gun on our streets. One of the shooters should have been behind bars rather than in Cornell Park on Thursday night.

“As we invest heavily in programs for youth, in new policing strategies, and in building supports for those most likely to fall into gangs, we also need a three-year mandatory minimum bill for gun crimes.” [Emphasis added.]

* This is the guy MRE was referring to

On Monday, Bryon Champ, 21, and Kewane Gatewood, 20, both of Chicago, were also charged with attempted murder and aggravated battery with a firearm. Chicago police said the two “played significant roles” in the shooting.

A law enforcement source said Champ and Gatewood helped transport the weapon used in the shooting to the scene. Another source said the shooting was in retaliation after one of the suspects had been grazed earlier in a gang conflict in Back of the Yards.

Police identified Champ as a convicted felon and a documented street gang member. He was convicted of unlawful use of a weapon by a felon in July 2012 and was sentenced to boot camp at the Cook County Department of Corrections. [Emphasis added.]

* According to the cops, Bryon Champ was injured last week in a shooting, so the Back of the Yards shooting was retaliatory

McCarthy said motivation behind the Back of the Yards shooting was retaliation, stemming from an unreported shooting the week before in which Champ was injured.

“As a result, the retaliation took place at Cornell Park,” he said. [Emphasis added.]

* More on Bryon Champ

Champ’s criminal record includes a 2012 conviction for aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and a 2011 conviction for receiving stolen property. He was sentenced to Cook County Jail boot camp for the gun-possession conviction and had received probation in the other case, records show.

On Monday, McCarthy pointed to the case to highlight the need for stricter gun laws.

“He received boot camp for that gun crime and was back out on the streets to be a part of this senseless shooting,” McCarthy said. “That is unacceptable. To truly address violence for the long-term we need state and federal laws that keep illegal guns out of our communities and provide real punishment for the criminals who use them.”

McCarthy continued to hammer the point at a news conference Tuesday, pressing the need for punishment for criminals who carry illegal guns: “If Bryon Champ is not on the street — as he shouldn’t have been — this incident likely does not occur.”

* So far, all Gov. Pat Quinn has done is talk about banning assault weapons and high capacity magazines. But maybe the governor ought to listen to Superintendent McCarthy and focus on keeping these criminals behind bars longer.

Champ gets boot camp for felony gun possession while he’s apparently on probation for another felony? What the heck?

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Todd - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:17 am:

    We offered the City a 85% 3 year term on Felons in possession last session, we were turned down cause they wanted the whole thing to include those without a carry permit when we didn’t have one.

  2. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:24 am:

    Who is “we,” Todd?

  3. - Mason born - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:29 am:


    I hate to say this but i don’t think Quinn wants to pass something that isn’t controversial. It seems like it goes against his reelection narrative of fighting for you little people against the big bad system.

    I don’t know of anyone (pro-gun) who doesn’t want serious time for criminal use or possession of a firearm. This should be the low hanging fruit for both sides.

  4. - Skeeter - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:31 am:

    Sure seems to me like if you are a felon and have a gun, three years is nothing. It should be ten.

    Let’s be honest about another point too though.

    Much of the problem is the judges. We elect too many liberal judges who just do not want to put people in prison. Cook County judges routinely are the weak link in the system.

  5. - anonymous - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:36 am:

    So, now Mayor Rahm and chief McCarthy seem to agree with Wayne LaPierre of the NRA. Also, don’t we have Federal gun laws which the US Attorney could prosecute, assuming Eric Holder agrees, of course?

  6. - blogman - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:40 am:

    We are closing prisons and selling prisons in Illinois. Preckwinkle says the jail is too crowded. The results are more dangerous communities for Illinois. That is what will continue to happen all over the state.

  7. - Bill White - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:40 am:


    === We elect too many liberal judges who just do not want to put people in prison. ===

    When we measure prisoners per 100,000 population, it would seem the United States leads the world.

  8. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:40 am:

    “Champ gets boot camp for felony gun possession while he’s apparently on probation for another felony? What the heck? ”

    Wasn’t longer minimum sentences on the table for Felon in possession of a gun last time around, but those that wanted the minimum wanted ANYONE with possession of a gun to get a minimum, not just previous felons and bad guys…

  9. - Logic not emotion - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:46 am:

    It isn’t just the judges though. What about the prosecutors who plead down severely so don’t go to trial? I know someone who committed forcible rape and assault and eventually plead down to a misdemeanor. That was an open and shut case; but county is financially strapped and trials are expensive. Also, what about the politicians who craft strategies to release convicts early to save the state money?

    I think Illinois really needs to look at the system and make adjustments. It is really messed up when an otherwise law abiding guy spends 14 months or whatever in Chicago jail for violating an unconstitutional law without ill intent and some gang banger gets boot camp for worse!

  10. - Fed up - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:50 am:

    Gang violence is the problem, not guns. Judges are elected to represent certain areas and judges in Cook Co seem to feel light sentences are the way to go, interesting these judges don’t feel protecting those they serve is important.

  11. - Liandro - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:51 am:

    My thinking pretty much goes with Logic not emotions. We spend how much incarcerating minor drug offenses and minor/accidental issues, but dangerous threats to society get boot camp? I’m genuinely confused about the State’s Attorney’s priorities.

  12. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:52 am:

    ==So far, all Gov. Pat Quinn has done is talk about banning assault weapons and high capacity magazines.==

    It seems an assault weapon was used in this shooting. So is the Governor wrong to want the ban?

  13. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:54 am:


    The reports say “an assault weapon” was used. but cook county defines that pretty broadly, like a pistol that can have more than 10 rounds… I would like to see they say the actual make and model used before I jump on that band wagon.

  14. - Pete - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:56 am:

    Where is Dart going to put all of these criminals that are caught carrying a gun illegally?

    Judges have it tough enough trying to use the limited space as it is.

    If you jail everyone, you wouldn’t be able to keep the worst behind bars.

    This is a bad game of passing the buck.
    The point here is that the community is a haven for crime and criminal activity. The community needs to step up and the alderman has to be the one to mobilize the residents. Until the community is willing to do it’s part, the city and government will fail.

  15. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:56 am:

    I read that the shell casings found at the scene were compatible with those used in AK-47s. Hence, my salute to that “bandwagon.”

  16. - wordslinger - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 11:59 am:

    ==I know someone who committed forcible rape and assault and eventually plead down to a misdemeanor.–

    “Forcible rape?” As opposed to what? “Passive rape.” What language are you speaking?

    “Rape” has a definition in the English language that incorporates force.

  17. - Wumpus - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:02 pm:

    Bill, how mnay of those are for minor drug offenses?

  18. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:03 pm:


    Havent seen it in print what was used, BUT I will say if it was an AK type (Real AKs are pretty much banned nationally) but lets say an MAK semi-auto variant… Guess what? it was already illegal in Cook County and the City of Chicago. And my guess is it wasn’t registered on the Chicago gun registry, the owner did not have a FOID and more than likely was already a previously convicted felon.

    So there are already several state, local and federal charges there. 1 more going to stop it?

  19. - Anonymous - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:03 pm:

    Statutory vs forcible perhaps?

  20. - Logic not emotion - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:07 pm:

    Word: Please forgive my use of laymen’s terms. Here is the correct term and a link to the actual situation. Logic

    Criminal Sexual Abuse Force
    Criminal Sexual Assault Force,2007CF559,IL092015JL2007CF559D1

  21. - Logic not emotion - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:09 pm:

    Anonymous 12:03. Exactly.

  22. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:09 pm:

    ===Please forgive my use of laymen’s terms.===

    Forgiven. Now, let’s move along. This thread is about murders and shootings.

  23. - Fed up - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:13 pm:

    All of the people talking about minor drug criminals being in prison how about some examples. It’s just not true. Minor drug crimes are laughed at in cook co courts. It takes multiple convictions to get any real prison time. It does seem a novel idea in Cook Co that incarcerating criminals can protect others in the area they live.

  24. - Mister Whipple - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:14 pm:

    Thanks Wampus.

    Our jails are full of people who are locked up because their mental illness and addiction leads them to crime, mostly non-violent, but we have cut to ribbons the treatment systems for the mentally ill and addicted. DOC has said that 80% of the people in the state corrections systems have mental health and/or addictions issues that helped lead them to criminal activity.

    Our jails are the biggest mental health centers in communities around the state. Empty the jails and prisons of the drug users and mentally ill, give them treatment, and we would open up plenty of room for the gangbangers, shooters and others who are the real scourges of society.

  25. - Logic not emotion - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:22 pm:

    I think it is a complicated issue involving sentencing, education and employment opportunities, peer pressure, community expectations and support, role models, family structure, drugs, gangs, parenting and a whole bunch of things that aren’t easily addressed so many politicians just blame guns. Is is easier, doesn’t alienate any voters and doesn’t cost much to just blame an inanimate object. It hasn’t done anything to improve the problem; but it probably has helped keep some in office who might not have been / might not be if focus was instead on the real issues.

  26. - OldSmoky2 - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:23 pm:

    When something like this happens, it’s easy to say we need to make sure all these guys get significant jail time. But do people stick with that position when it comes time to support higher appropriations for state prisons and the Cook County Sheriff’s office? A lot of folks want a new Mercedes, it seems, for the price of a used Impala. Sure, we can point to people being in jail for lesser offenses and say that shouldn’t be. But how many politicians are ready to support treatment, not jail, for drug offenses? My guess is this story will be news for a couple days and nothing will change.

  27. - Skeeter - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:28 pm:

    Not sure where you are from, OldSmoky2, but some of us have been demanding longer sentences for a long time.

    Some of us find it ridiculous that our budget cuts prison guards but pays for beautiful doors on a public building. We wonder why the press staff for the Gov’s office is fully funded, by DCFS is not.

    We’d be happy to pay more for prison space but we would like to see it come from cutting waste.

  28. - Just saying - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:28 pm:

    These gangbangers are convicted felons who have guns . They do not worry about getting a FOID (prior to being felons). No matter what they will get guns. They have no fear in anything and the last thing they think about is the law. We need to pass laws and also ENFORCE the laws we have on the books. Boot camp for this kid? Are you serious? One other point, just last week a Cook County judge issued 400k bond on a previous convicted felon for Armed Vehicular car jacking a Chicago Police Officer and this felon also stole the officers duty weapon, vest amd bullet propf vest. That is terrible. People need to talk about these examples. The bad guys can get all the social services possible and they do exist but the laws need to be enforced and I agree with mandatory 3 year sentence for a gun possession felon automatic no questions.

  29. - Todd - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:29 pm:

    Word I told it to the City people more than once. WE as the NRA could work on and support the felons in possession issue. The Cook SA often tosses the AGUUW or UUW as part of the plea deal for what ever reason.

    But I tried to pair down the issue to bad guys with guns. But they were so invested in the Plaxco Burress version they didn’t seem to care.

  30. - CircularFiringSquad - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:44 pm:

    How about someone toss out the judge’s name…we can turn that over to the BGA and Hand Out Andy and his crew can run the dude or dudette out of town

  31. - Mason born - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:48 pm:


    Just fyi on Friday the tribune (and others) reported the casings were 7.62.

  32. - Rod - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:48 pm:

    The issue before us in Chicago in relation to the Back of the Yards shootings is not access to weapons but rather the use of street gangs in Chicago as drug distributors for the Joaquin Guzman, known as “El Chapo”. The Sinaloa cartel now fully controls heroin, cocaine, crack, and marijuana whole sale operations in the City and the suburbs. The wars that are taking place are simply among pawns fighting for crumbs.

    If the weapon used turns out to be a fully automatic AK47 does anyone really think the perps bought it at a gun shop in Tennessee? Tabari Young, 22, is now charged with three counts of attempted murder and aggravated battery and Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy has stated today that Young is the suspected shooter who used “a military-grade weapon.” But there is no claim that the weapon has been recovered in any of today’s press reports.

    Somehow I doubt the Sinaloa cartel would be deeply impressed with stricter gun laws and more time for the various drug distributors or associates that are driving the killing in Chicago. For a good article on the role of the Sinaloa cartel in Chicago’s murder problems go to

    Lastly I would suggest with the kind of money the Sinaloa cartel is generating in Chicago it is very possible there are members of the CPD on the take. Now being 60 years old and having grown up in this town I have seen so many police officers taken down for corruption linked to drug distribution that it is astounding. Here is a link to one of dozens of such stories about CPD corruption

  33. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 12:53 pm:


    I’ll take your word for it. I must have read earlier reports. Though that is perplexing. I mean looking at the current list of firearms and types not allowed in Cook there are few if any in 7.62 x 39.

  34. - Freezeup - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:03 pm:

    It’s the judges. Increasing penalties seems to motivate judges to make “innovative” new case law that prevents genuinely dangerous people from going to prison where they belong. The judges find ways to give probation when there is a minimum prison sentence prescribed in the statute. They fail the law abiding public by releasing the criminals, the public demands harsher sentences, the legislature obliges and the cycle continues.

    In my area, most of the offenders who are convicted of violent crime have histories of other offenses that should have landed them in prison before they hurt someone. Often those offenses are the “minor drug offenses” mentioned earlier where a defendant is arrested for distributing a controlled substance but pleads guilty to the lessor offense of possessing a controlled substance, thus creating the false notion that we are filling the prisons with minor drug offenders.

    I am not in the Chicago area. I often wonder how bad you must be, how many bad acts you must commit in a city that size to get the attention of the police and get arrested. Then the judges work so hard not to hang felonies around these offenders necks? Why would that be?

    The answer is to abide by the laws we have, send the guilty to prison, repeat. It is not the judges job to worry if there is no room at the inn.

  35. - Boone's is Back - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:05 pm:

    People on here blaming Cook County judges don’t understand the issue. If you’ve been following the spat between Preckwinkle, Dart, and Judge Evans- the judges are reluctant to provide more lenient sentencing- including electronic monitoring- because of exactly this situation. No one wants to be the one who frees the next Willie Horton. That includes the politicians.

  36. - Mason born - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:05 pm:


    I know it is perplexing. They didn’t give case length. I guess it could have been a Tokarev or a .308. Are they on the list?

  37. - Freezeup - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:09 pm:

    Rod, your post is spot on.

    Street gangs and cartels have worked on infiltrating all police departments, not just CPD, for many years.

  38. - John Boch - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:16 pm:

    Cook County Jail boot camp.

    Boy, I bet that was some scary stuff there.

    With a criminal justice system like that, it’s no wonder predatory animals are out victimizing the residents of Chicago.

    When are the people of Chicago going to say “enough!” with these violent, habitual criminals and put them away for real time?

    It’s five years federal time for a felon in possession of a gun. No probation. No parole.

    And this guy got Cook County Jail boot camp for aggravated UUW by a FELON?

    And we’ve got a guy with a FOID card and a carry permit from SD in the Cook County jail for 14 months for carrying a gun to protect himself.

    What’s wrong with this picture?

  39. - Fed up - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:22 pm:


    What you are talking about with Evans, Preckwinkle and Dart are Bonds not prison sentences. Compared to other counties cook co judges are far more leaniant

  40. - Cook County Commoner - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:46 pm:

    Threads like this remind me of Dickens Christmas Carol, especially the Ghost of Christmas Present warning Scrooge of the two wretched orphans under his cloak, Ignorance and Want. And Scrooge was reminded of his earlier words: “Are there no prisons, no workhouses?”
    Some folks need to drive through the worst of the worst in Chicago. Layer that with worthless schools, missing parents and no jobs, and there are few on this blog who could have resisted the gang and violence option if they were born into it.
    The problem is not guns, lenient judges, insufficient jail cells or the Sinaloa cartel. The problem is a society which actively sweeps the less fortunate under the rug until they show up at your door step.

  41. - anon - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:53 pm:

    Preckinkle rolled back the sales tax. If you want more people in jail, that tax needs to go back on.

  42. - West Side the Best Side - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:54 pm:

    A Cook County Boot Camp sentence is a legitimate, legal alternative disposition for a Class 2 Unlawful Use of Weapon by a Felon charge.(A sort of misnomer for the charge since if he done anything with the weapon other then possessed it there would have been other charges.) Instead of being just warehoused in the Illinois Department of Corrections, County Boot has education, drug and other programs that are mandatory, not just leaving it up to an IDOC inmate to decide if he wants a program. After the in-custody phase Boot Camp inmates are followed much more closely than an IDOC parolee. Someone Champ’s age at the time - 19 or 20 based on his age now - could benefit more and possibly change his life around with Boot better than IDOC. The fact that didn’t happen in his case is not a fault of the criminal justice system. Judges cannot predict the future when they sentence someone. If Champ had been given a 3 year IDOC sentence he might have been out by now anyway since that is a day for day sentence. If judges could predict the future they would become a judge, pick the numbers for the next huge Lotto and not have to worry that out of hundreds of defendants one of them is going to blow up in their face.

  43. - Just saying - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:56 pm:

    Judge Brown is the Judge that issued a 400k bond for the Chicago Police Officer who was Car Jacked by a convicted felon. This needs to be brought up and talked about.

  44. - RonOglesby - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 1:56 pm:

    @Cook County Commoner,

    yes there are big societal problems. BUT that does not alleviate personal responsibility. Regardless of environment people know the laws and are still part of a society that enforces them.

  45. - Esquire - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 2:36 pm:

    Under the administration of Governor Quinn, Illinois has repeatedly released convicts from prisons early to save money. Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle wants fewer inmates in the Cook County Jail and faster trials to allow the county to transfer inmates to the Illinois Department of Corrections. Preckwinkle also wants fewer drug busts.

    The killing fields of the South and West sides of Chicago are filled with people who really belong behind bars.

    I would support a tax increase to fund more prisons.

  46. - Thomas - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 2:37 pm:

    Boot Camp is a lienent sentence, but not as lienent as probation and probation is often the sentence in gun cases like this.

  47. - Demoralized - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 3:30 pm:

    ==Under the administration of Governor Quinn, Illinois has repeatedly released convicts from prisons early to save money.==

    That didn’t just happen under Quinn. And because of the big backlash about it they stopped releasing prisoners early altogether which is also horrible public policy. You are never going to please everybody. He’s damned if he does and damned if he doesn’t. Either you fund the prisons or you let people out. You can’t have it both ways.

  48. - Chavz-respecting Obamist - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 3:38 pm:

    I really hope these are the guys who are actually guilty, because they’re going to jail whether they did it or not.

  49. - Boone's is Back - Tuesday, Sep 24, 13 @ 5:21 pm:

    ===What you are talking about with Evans, Preckwinkle and Dart are Bonds not prison sentences. Compared to other counties cook co judges are far more leaniant===

    Fed Up- yes bonds were part of that discussion. So was electronic monitoring. The argument was part of a larger one with overcrowding at the jail.

  50. - anonymous - Wednesday, Sep 25, 13 @ 11:23 am:

    Hear hear, West Side.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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* Google One launches with cheaper cloud storage plans
* YouTube just gave The Nun the best viral marketing campaign it could hope for
* Researchers teach Hearthstone bot to dominate Legend rank players
* T-Mobile will give year-long Pandora Plus service to all customers this month
* T-Mobile is giving customers a free year of Pandora Plus
* T-Mobile is completely overhauling how its customer service works
* Check out the most recent G Suite launches

* Casting fate: White Sox overcome Detroit, 6-3
* Six Pack of Stats: White Sox 6, Tigers 3
* Six Pack of Stats: White Sox 6, Tigers 3
* White Sox Minor League Update: August 14, 2018
* White Sox Minor League Update: August 14, 2018
* Giolito keeps composure in White Sox win
* Big Klu in '59 White Sox best August trade

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