After the silence over the incident with security details, Preckwinkle promises “short” public notices in the future – NBC Chicago
After being in silence for a week after security guards exchanged shots with a car thief, Cook County President Toni Preckwinkle promised Friday to alert the public if the detail was involved in an “act of violence.”
But Preckwinkle indicated that she still wouldn’t have much to say about such incidents, even if a cop shot someone.
“In the unfortunate event that my Executive Detail is confronted with another act of violence, a brief public notice will be issued which will continue to ensure the safety of my employees and myself and will not interfere with ongoing investigations,” she said in a statement.
Preckwinkle was criticized this week when CWB Chicago reported that a Forest Preserves official stationed outside their Hyde Park home shot someone who tried to steal his car on the night of September 27th.
Neither Preckwinkle nor the Chicago police had said anything about the incident, and it is still not known whether the robber was shot dead. In her statement, Preckwinkle said it was up to the Chicago police to notify the public, not them.
“To protect the integrity of an ongoing investigation, we have followed the standard procedure that allows the lead law enforcement agency, CPD, to determine what information is shared and when,” she said.
The police department has not explained why the incident was not reported in the department’s main incidents log at the time, which is constantly updated with the most serious crimes in the city, including car theft.
The incident occurred around 8:30 p.m. near Preckwinkle’s home on Block 5100 on South Kimbark Avenue. A Forest Preserves police officer parked outside opened fire on an armed man who was trying to take his car, according to a law enforcement source aware of the investigation.
The officer then returned fire, the source said. Police were initially told that the officer was not on duty at the time, the source said.
But the Forest Preserves District said in a brief statement that the officer was a member of Preckwinkel’s “Executive Protection Squad” and was on duty. The statement said the officer “fired shots when attempted carjacking,” but said nothing about the carjacker being armed or firing.
At around the same time, the Chicago police released a statement, but the brief narrative did not identify the person involved as a police officer. And it said nothing about shots fired by anyone.
Preckwinkle’s Security Department – a team of three, each earning more than $ 100,000 in salaries – has been staffed by officers from the Forest Prosecution Department since 2016. It was previously manned by officials from the county emergency management department.