This is a little snapshot of about 90 minutes in the 19th district today. Here you can see very clearly how the district’s critically-short manpower affects response times, the subsequent non-reporting of crimes, and a general inability to handle matters in a timely fashion.
Even Alderman Tom Tunney’s call about a disturbance outside of the Broadway Youth Center went unassigned for an hour.
Tick by tick:
1:18PM: An apartment manager reports that a man, described as male, Hispanic, carrying a clear backpack and going westbound, just stole packages and mail from a building in 3500 block of Pine Grove. The call is assigned to a car 79 minutes later, at 2:37PM.
1:22PM: Theft at Menard’s, 2601 N. Clybourn. Twenty minutes later, the call is upgraded to a theft with battery of the store manager. The call is assigned 74 minutes after the initial dispatch, at 2:36PM. Then, at 2:42PM, Menard’s reports that their offender got away. Side note: When the call was assigned, the dispatcher asks the officer to let her know if he needs an assist car “or if they still need the police.” Unfortunately for the statistics, Menard’s did still need the police in order to file a report. CPD case #HW501721.
1:22PM: Theft at Target in Uptown. The call is assigned 72 minutes later, at 2:34PM.
1:31PM: Dispatcher asks permission to hold the previous three calls for the next shift because there are no units available to handle them. Response: “Hold them. We ain’t got nobody.”
1:38PM: The 19th district enters Radio Assignment Pending (RAP) status, which means no cars are available to handle calls for service.
1:42PM: A laundry list of pending assignments is read, including this new one: The alderman’s office says about five rowdy teens are outside of 615 W. Wellington, home of the Wellington Avenue United Church of Christ and the Broadway Youth Center.
1:59PM: An updated list of unassigned calls is read. The alderman’s call is now described as “males loitering out front being loud.”
2:36PM: Nearly an hour after the alderman’s call is first mentioned, it gets assigned to a car. Details: four to five teens being loud, rowdy, and shouting profanities at the passing cars.
3:00PM: Several cars coming on duty are unable to handle the backlog of calls because they are required to sit on “Safe Passage” routes.
3:18PM: The RAP is closed out.
This makes us wonder what kind of response times any newly-formed Block Clubs will receive. Our guess is the clubs will not be pleased.