Concerned that “crime in Lakeview seems to be getting worse day by day,” Elaine Osgood is organizing a community meeting at the Athenaeum Theatre, 2936 N. Southport, at 7PM this Wednesday.
Osgood, sales manager at nearby Diag Bar and Grill, says “it’s time to come together as a community and discuss ways we as residents can make Lakeview safe again. We have all worked too hard to make Lakeview the thriving place it is, and we deserve to feel safe in our own houses and on our streets.”
Originally scheduled to be held at Diag, the event was quickly moved to the Athenaeum after an outpouring of support via the event’s Facebook page.
Through April 15, overall reported crime is up 19% in Lakeview compared to the same time last year. Among the most serious crime categories, robberies are up 97%, burglaries are up 131%, and auto thefts are up 121% compared to the same period last year.
Reports of those major crimes are also up compared to 2014, city records show.
Osgood told the Facebook group that she is “committed to making sure we stick to a focused agenda with solutions and follow up action items…structure will be key to this meeting.”
“I think we need to meet as a community and decide what action, if any, we want to ask for from the [aldermen] and be strategic. I think there is more we can do OURSELVES and show them that it doesn’t take money and funding to control the crime…just dedication and commitment to safety.”
32nd Ward Alderman Scott Waguespack “has been very helpful and even though he won’t be at the meeting, [he] provided me with a lot of information to help start a great foundation for a successful neighborhood watch which I am excited to share at the meeting,” Osgood said.
“This isn’t about getting the ‘higher-ups’ involved to support us. This is about empowering ourselves. We have more power than we think, and we as a community WILL put a stop to this foolish violence and theft…with or without [the city’s] help.