Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch Invites All to Meeting at Archer/Neva

By Tim Hadac
Managing Editor
Southwest Chicago Post

For the second time in three months, the Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch will hold a public meeting at a place some consider a trouble spot.

All those who live in or own a business in CPD Beat 811
(central and west Garfield Ridge; everything west of Central Avenue) are invited to the event, set for 7:00 p.m. Monday, August 19 on the street, immediately north of Archer and Neva.

(In case of foul weather, the meeting will head inside to the Croatian Radio Club headquarters at Archer and Nordica.)

The site was chosen by the GRNW to express ongoing concern for petty crime occurring in and around the adjacent parking lot at Walgreens, 7150 West Archer, and update everyone on steps the pharmacy giant has taken to make its grounds safer and cleaner.

“There have been concerns about some people--not customers--using the parking lot as a place to buy and sell drugs and conduct other illegal transactions,” said GRNW President Al Cacciottolo. “Plus, there have been concerns about panhandlers at and around that site.”

Cacciottolo said that Walgreens management has been receptive to listening to local residents’ concerns and appears to be taking steps to address them.

The site is no stranger to occasional complaints by neighbors. For years, some have complained about the unkempt condition of the CTA bus turnaround at Archer and Neva. CTA officials have occasionally been criticized for failing to empty their trash cans in a timely manner or keep the parkway weeds under control.

Back in June, the GRNW held an outdoor meeting in the street in the 5200 block of South Neenah—the site of a home burglary in late May—to organize neighbors angry about the crime. Turnout exceeded expectations. Roughly 100 men, women and children flooded the street—about double the typical turnout at a GRNW meeting.

Background

Founded in 2009 by three people fed up with crime in the area, the GRNW has grown in size and strength and has been credited with helping reduce crime in Garfield Ridge, long one of the city’s safest neighborhoods.

The GRNW is widely viewed as one of the most effective citizen-led crime prevention organizations in the city or suburbs.

Born with assistance from the Clearing Night Force, the GRNW has helped start neighborhood watches in city neighborhoods as far away as Hegewisch and as close as West Lawn, as well as in suburban areas like Central Stickney, Summit and Oak Lawn.

GRNW members on patrol do not pursue criminals or get directly involved with crimes in progress, but they do serve as extra sets of eyes and ears for police, providing direction that has helped police solve crimes in some cases and prevent others. Their toll-free tip line played a role in the capture several years ago of a man who attempted to rob, at knifepoint, the Walgreens at Archer and Harlem.
Those interested in joining the group now are encouraged to send a message to email@garfieldridgenw.com.






Saturday, August 10, 2019

City investigates salmonella outbreak at grocery store on 63rd Street in Clearing

The Chicago Department of Public Health is investigating an
outbreak of Salmonella, a bacterium that is a common cause of food poisoning.

Since the beginning of July, at least four people became ill after eating pork tamales or carnitas served from the deli section of Sun View Produce, 6110 West 63rd Street.

If you have pork tamales, carnitas or other hot foods purchased from the deli section of this establishment since July 1, in your freezer, do not eat it—throw it out.

If you ate food purchased from the deli section since July 1, you may have been exposed to Salmonella. If you are experiencing severe diarrhea, symptoms of dehydration or high fever, seek medical attention.

As of August 5, the suspected food items are no longer available at the store. There is no evidence that food made after this date was contaminated. CDPH performed an environmental assessment of the grocery store and provided guidance on safe food handling practices and environmental cleaning to prevent further spread of disease. CDPH has also issued an alert to area physicians about the outbreak, providing medical guidance.

Salmonella symptoms usually last four to seven days, and most individuals recover without any treatment. Most people who are infected develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps between 12 and 72 hours after eating contaminated food. Although most infections resolve without antibiotics, older individuals or those with weakened immune systems may need medical evaluation and treatment. For more information on Salmonella, visit cdc.gov/salmonella.

CDPH is monitoring for additional reports of illness. If you experienced diarrheal illness after consuming foods from Sun View Produce, contact the Chicago Department of Public Health by calling (312) 746-SICK (7425) to file a suspected food poisoning complaint.


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Tuesday, July 30, 2019

‘National Night Out’ Crime Fighting Events Set for Local Parks, Streets

By Joan Hadac
Editor and Publisher
Southwest Chicago Post

More than a thousand Southwest Siders are expected to take
a public stand against crime at the area’s annual National Night Out Against Crime celebrations, set for Tuesday, Aug. 6.

An NNO event for all residents of the Chicago Lawn (8th) Police District is set for 6 p.m. Tuesday at West Lawn Park, 4233 W. 65th St. Year after year, it is one of Chicago’s largest and most successful NNO celebrations.

“It has a real small-town feel,” said West Lawn resident Barbara Ziegler, the event’s principal organizer and one of the most visible civilian crime fighters in Chicago. “It’s draws a wide range of people—from babies in strollers to moms and dads to senior citizens, everyone; and while it’s a lot of fun, it’s also about bringing people together to build safer and better neighborhoods—not just in West Lawn—but all across the district, which we do every year.”

Ziegler, who heads the Eighth’s District’s volunteer court advocacy program—arguably the largest and most effective in the city—said that about 800 men, women and children will be at the event. When she started running the event 17 years ago, about two dozen people attended. 

The event will include a prayer, remarks by police officials and elected representatives, a “peace parade” around the perimeter of the park at 6:30 p.m., and more. Special emphasis will be placed on thanking Chicago Police and others in law enforcement.

CPD’s mounted patrol and canine units will be on hand to give demonstrations, and there will be a number of giveaways for adults and children who live in the district, while supplies last. A color TV will be raffled off; those who march are eligible to win.

Cold drinks, snow cones, popcorn and other treats will be available to keep everyone cool.

Included in the goody bags for adults is potentially lifesaving information that includes basic tips on how to make an effective 911 call, how to escape domestic violence, how to join the local CAPS effort and more.

A number of local businesses, large and small, have made contributions to the NNO at West Lawn Park, now in its 17th year. Nationally, NNO is in its 36th year.

At dusk, a movie suitable for families will be shown outside. 

All are welcome to bring blankets and lawn chairs.

West end of 8

While the NNO celebration at West Lawn Park is for people in every neighborhood in the Eighth District, two crime fighting organizations on the west end are planning their own, smaller events.

In Beat 812 (the Clearing neighborhood west of Central
Avenue), the Clearing Night Force neighborhood watch group will gather near Hale School at 62nd and Melvina for a prayer vigil at 6:00 p.m., followed by a motorcade through the community and then refreshments at Hale Park.

The site at 62nd and Melvina is a memorial to two local girls who lost their lives in a gang-related shooting in 1995. Community shock and outrage over the double homicide led to the formation of the Clearing Night Force, one of Chicago’s oldest neighborhood watch groups.

The Garfield Ridge Neighborhood Watch, which serves Beat
811 (all of Garfield Ridge west of Central Avenue), will organize a fire truck-led motorcade that will start at 7 p.m. at St. Daniel the Prophet Church, 54th and Nashville, and wind up and down the neighborhood’s arterial streets.

It will end where it started, capped off with a brief prayer vigil at dusk.

All Beat 811 residents are invited to join in the motorcade and attend the vigil afterwards.

For more information on the district-wide observance at West Lawn Park, call the CPD Eighth District CAPS Office at (312) 747-8724.

For information on the Clearing NNO event, call (773) 340-8021 or send an email to clearingnightforce812@gmail.com.
For information on the Garfield Ridge NNO event, send an email to email@garfieldridgenw.com.


Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Crime News Update

Editor's note: The crime news reported by the Southwest Chicago Post---taken directly from Chicago Police Department incident reports---is not by any means an exhaustive catalogue of all crime reported in the Chicago Lawn (8th) District. For example, it typically does not include news of crimes committed in the eastern sectors of the district---because the Southwest Chicago Post's coverage area is primarily the neighborhoods that border Midway Airport and secondarily because including the relatively large volume of crime news from elsewhere in the district would be a logistical challenge. We make this note to offer a little helpful perspective and remind everyone that while crime is definitely a concern in all parts of the district (as it always has been), crime remains relatively low overall in the western section of the district. May all of us work together diligently to keep it that way. May all of us also remember that a person charged with a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.


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Arrest woman on domestic violence charge
Yesenia Montero



A 46-year-old Clearing woman was charged with domestic battery after she was arrested at her home in the 6100 block of South Menard at 2:39 a.m. Sunday, June 23.


Yesenia Montero was apprehended after she allegedly struck a 44-year-old man.





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Want to work directly with Chicago Police to prevent crime in your neighborhood? If you live in and/or own a business in Beat 812 (see map) make plans to attend your next CAPS meeting, set for 7:00 p.m. Wednesday, July 10 at the Clearing Branch Library, 6423 West 63rd Place. Hear updates on crime in your neighborhood and learn how you can work with neighbors and police to make the community safer and better for all.




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Claim man hit woman on 63rd Street
Joel Moreno



A 32-year-old man from south suburban Lansing was charged with domestic battery after he was arrested on the street at 63rd and Kilbourn at 4:51 a.m. Saturday, June 22.


Joel A. Moreno, of the 2000 block of 185th Street, was apprehended after officers reportedly saw him scuffling with a 29-year-old woman.








Man charged again with domestic battery
Eduardo Aragon



A 53-year-old Scottsdale man was charged with domestic battery after he was arrested in the 8300 block of South Kolmar at 2:05 p.m. Tuesday, June 25.

Eduardo Aragon, of the 8100 block of South Knox, was apprehended without incident. He allegedly punched a 49-year-old woman, police said.

According to public records, Aragon has been arrested five times by CPD since 2016, on charges that included domestic battery (three times) and aggravated DUI.





Claim man threatened his family
Jaime Carlin



A 42-year-old West Elsdon man was charged with three counts of aggravated assault after he was arrested at 5:30 p.m. Monday, June 17 at his home in the 4100 block of West 57th Place.

Jaime Carlin allegedly threatened to kill three members of his family.

According to public records, Carlin was arrested at his home last month and charged with domestic battery.





Bust Summit man at Dunkin’ Donuts
Jose Mendoza



A 42-year-old Summit was charged with battery and criminal trespass to land after he was arrested at the Dunkin’ Donuts at 5615 S. Harlem at 8:53 a.m. Saturday, June 22.

Jose Mendoza of the 7600 block of Lawndale, allegedly walked into the shop although he had previously been told never to come back, a CPD spokesman said.

He also allegedly threw a drink on another person. Police declined to say what the drink was or if the other person was a customer or employee.



garfieldridgenw.com



Arrest Scottsdale woman on shoplifting rap
Justina Anaele



A 43-year-old Scottsdale woman was charged with retail theft after she was arrested at a Ford City store at 5:40 p.m. Wednesday, June 19.


Justina Nkechinyere Anaele, of the 4100 block of West 80th Place, was apprehended with out incident. Police declined to say what allegedly was stolen or from which store.






Claim man stole from store on Pulaski
Thomas Beach



A 32-year-old Oak Forest man was charged with retail theft after he was arrested at a store in the 4400 block of South Pulaski at 3:45 p.m. Friday, June 21.

Thomas E. Beach, of the 5900 block of Condado Drive, was apprehended without incident. Police declined to say what was reportedly stolen or from what store.

According to public records, Beach has been arrested eight times by CPD since 2014 on charges that included identity theft, possession of a controlled substance, panhandling and criminal trespass to land.




Arrested again on shoplifting rap
Gwendolyn Washington



A 64-year-old South Shore woman was charged with retail theft after she allegedly stole cosmetics from a store at Ford City.

Gwendolyn Washington, of the 7300 block of South Perry, was held by store security and arrested by police at 4:10 p.m. Saturday, June 15.

According to public records, Washington has been arrested five times by CPD since 2015—each time on a retail theft charge.








Charge woman with 7-Eleven theft
Yvette Moss



A 53-year-old West Englewood woman was charged with retail theft after she was arrested at the 7-Eleven at 4353 W. 55th St. at 3:57 a.m. Friday, June 14.

Yvette Rhonda Moss, of the 5600 block of South Honore, was arrested without incident. 

According to public records, Moss has been arrested three times by CPD since 2016—once on a retail theft charge at Ford City.





Palos Hills woman charged with felony after bust at Walgreens
Amani Abraham


A 40-year-old Palos Hills woman was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance, as well as using a fraudulent prescription, after she was arrested at the Walgreens at 7150 W. Archer at 12:25 p.m. Thursday, June 13.

Amani Abraham, of the 9700 block of South Kingsbury Court, was reportedly arrested at the pharmacy with a controlled substance in her possession.

Police did not say what the substance was. A pharmacist told police that Abraham said she was dropping off a prescription for another person.

The pharmacist contacted the man listed on the prescription, but he stated he did not authorize anyone to pick up a prescription for him, police said. Then the pharmacist contacted the doctor named on the prescription, and he said he did not authorize the prescription and that it was false, police added.






Say man had illegal gun, crack cocaine
Jashun Lambert



An 18-year-old Vittum Park man was charged with armed violence and possession of a controlled substance after he was arrested at a home in the 4500 block of South Lawler at 6:53 p.m. Friday, June 14.

Jashun M. Lambert, of the 4800 block of South Laporte, was arrested by police executing a search warrant, a CPD spokesman said.

Police reportedly recovered a handgun and suspect crack cocaine from Lambert.







Bust woman on prostitution rap
Kaitlyn Kwak



A 23-year-old Vittum Park woman was charged with prostitution after she was arrested in the 4700 block of West 51st Street at 10:27 p.m. Wednesday, June 19.


Kaitlyn Rose Kwak, of the 4700 block of South Lamon, was arrested after she allegedly told an undercover CPD officer that she would perform a sex act for money.




Charge woman with prostitution
Dawn Schackart



A 37-year-old Hearst area woman was charged with prostitution after she was arrested by police at 8:30 p.m. Monday, June 17 in front of 5135 S. Cicero.

Dawn H. Schackart, of the 4500 block of South Lawler, was arrested by a specialized unit working in an undercover capacity.

According to public records, Schackart has been arrested five times by CPD since 2014.






Bust man on cannabis rap
Leonel Pfeifer



A 21-year-old Clearing man was charged with cannabis possession after a traffic stop that occurred in the 6100 block of South Archer at 10:05 p.m. Saturday, June 22.


Leonel O. Pfeifer, of the 6200 block of South Meade, was apprehended after police reportedly found cannabis in his vehicle.









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