After 74 people were shot over one of the city’s most violent weekends in more than two years, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and police Superintendent Eddie Johnson pleaded with the community to come forward with information to hold people accountable for the carnage, including 12 fatalities.
“You all know who these individuals are,” a frustrated Johnson said at one point.
But the fear and discomfort in reporting on neighbors is real. And the police are not trusted by many people in the affected communities.
“I think it is disheartening that we are at Tuesday after the weekend we had without anyone being charged,” Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx told the Tribune in a phone interview. “The feeling that people can do this with impunity makes the work that much more difficult.”
On Tuesday, the Police Department refused to release current data on how many homicides and shootings it solves — known as clearance rates — telling the Tribune to file a Freedom of Information Act request.
Detective division sources interviewed Tuesday by the Tribune said they absolutely need community help to solve shootings and homicides. They were also sensitive to fears that residents have of cooperating with police.
“It’s understandable,” said one of the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he didn’t have the department’s permission to speak. “It’s a dangerous thing to be a murder witness in the neighborhood where the murders are taking place.”