The Chicago Police Department has been slow to make critical changes that could improve its taxpayer-funded body camera program, the city’s watchdog found.
The department made little progress on changes recommended by the Chicago Inspector General (IG) two years ago, the oversight agency said in a report released Thursday. In 2019, the IG found lax oversight by supervisors who are required to check officers’ body camera videos, and an oversight committee that failed to meet regularly.
The IG made a series of recommendations, including that CPD take “corrective measures” to ensure lieutenants do their required reviews of body camera videos. Those reviews are a key accountability measure designed to make sure officers use their cameras properly.
Since 2017, nearly every CPD officer has been equipped with a body camera. The technology cost taxpayers more than $16 million, and department policy outlines clear requirements for turning on and using the cameras.
* Five days…
A Chicago cop has been issued a five-day suspension for his ties to the far-right Proud Boys and is now facing a second internal probe into allegations of sexual abuse, the Sun-Times has learned.
Officer Robert Bakker is the subject of four internal investigations that were all opened last year, according to records obtained by the Sun-Times.
Though the inquiry into Bakker’s cozy relationship with the Proud Boys initially resulted in the suspension, he hasn’t yet served it because the case was later reopened at the request of Inspector General Joseph Ferguson’s office, according to a source with knowledge of the investigation. The inspector general’s office didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Ald. Andre Vazquez (40th) previously raised alarms about Bakker to Police Supt. David Brown and Mayor Lori Lightfoot that he said fell on deaf ears. In an interview Wednesday, Vazquez said Bakker’s interactions with the controversial group should have resulted in “an immediate dismissal or some kind of punitive action.”
From a year ago…
The screenshots, which are about a year old, appear to show Bakker coordinating Proud Boy meet-ups in the area
* Background is here if you need it. Block Club Chicago…
Despite having a license plate number and name, police haven’t arrested or cited the woman who drove through a family’s yard and hit a neighbor’s car over the weekend.
The inaction has angered Far Northwest Siders who say she needs to be held accountable for dangerously escalating clashes between supporters and critics of Ald. Jim Gardiner (45th).
Pete Czosnyka, who thinks his home was targeted by the driver because of his criticism of Gardiner, said he identified the woman from multiple tips and license plate information provided by witnesses. Czosnyka said he gave that information to police, who looked up the driver’s plates within an hour of the incident and told him “she lived close” but did not provide a name, he said. […]
The fact that officers from the 16th District have not made moves on the case is concerning, Czosnyka said — especially because one of the officers who came to his house is the vice president of the Northwest Side GOP Club and the 41st Ward Republican committeeman.
The 41st Ward GOP Committeeperson is Ammie Kessem.
…Adding… Five days after the alleged crime…
A woman who allegedly threatened a Jefferson Park family over their criticism of a Northwest Side alderman before mowing down their garden with her car has been arrested, police said Thursday.
Officers arrested a woman before noon Thursday and said charges are pending against the individual, whose name was not yet released, a Police Department spokesman said.
* Despite Consent Decree, Police Reform Remains Elusive
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* Illinois Lawmakers Bar Police From Using Deception When Interrogating Minors