Saturday, October 21, 2017

And the winner is...Scottsdale!

By Joan Hadac
Editor and Publisher
Southwest Chicago Post

When I heard that a small group of determined people in the
Scottsdale neighborhood were struggling with their first-ever attempt to organize a charity 5K run/walk, I thought well, even if they attract 30 or 40 participants--hey, it's a decent start, something to build on.

Well, the first-ever Scottsdale 5K trick or Trot Walk and Run went off today at 83rd and Kostner, starting and ending at the St. Bede Parish grounds.

But it wasn't 30 or 40 people. Some 105 men, women and children had registered in advance, bolstered by about 20 day-of registrants.

Impressive, I'd say!

Congratulations to the winner, Scottsdale resident Tim Cummings--as well as everyone else who ran or walked (or even pedaled, as two women did).

Congrats and thanks, as well, to event chairman Jason Huff and all those who volunteered their time, talent, brains and brawn. You make St. Bede Parish and the Scottsdale neighborhood one of the best places in Chicago!

Thanks, too, to 18th Ward Alderman Derrick Curtis, who was there at the start of the event, even though he was feeling under the weather. He left a bit early, so he's not in the photos we shot, but he was there when it counted. That's leadership...

In no particular order, here are some photos we shot at the event. Enjoy...

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Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Midway Area Homeowners Lose Faith in Aviation Dept., Chart Their Own Course

By Tim Hadac
Managing Editor
Southwest Chicago Post

Midway area homeowners who say they have lost faith in the Chicago Department of Aviation’s efforts to offer substantial relief relating to the ongoing concern over government-supplied windows and doors emitting fumes that may be toxic, are taking matters into their own hands.

Chrysler Village homeowner Pam Zidarich, one of four RSIP homeowners initially profiled by the Southwest News-Herald in early June, has announced that she and others who have lost faith in CDA are forming a not-for-profit organization.

Dubbed Midway Defective Window Recipients, the new
group’s aim is to unite RSIP homeowners in a drive to raise funds to hire an independent environmental health firm to conduct their own testing “to get to the bottom of what these windows and doors have put into the air we breathe, and what effect that has on our health.”

“We’ve given the Department of Aviation every chance to do the right thing and take corrective action to test the air in our homes, find out what we’ve been breathing for the last few years and take corrective action,” Zidarich said. “In response, they have delayed, they have failed to return phone calls, they have thrown legal roadblocks in our way, they have even lied to us; and then they hired a company to do the testing, and a company vice president admitted publicly that his company has never done this specific type of testing.”

CDA officials have repeatedly said they share the homeowners’ concerns and are working diligently through a multi-layered process to learn exactly what is in the fumes—and to replace RSIP windows as quickly as they reasonably can.

The MDWR’s first meeting is set for 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 23 at West Lawn Park, 4233 W. 65th St. All
homeowners with defective and possibly poisonous RSIP windows and doors are welcome to attend. Pastries, snacks and light refreshments will be served.

Zidarich thanked 13th Ward Ald. Marty Quinn for his role in making the event happen.

After initially refusing to test the air inside RSIP homes, CDA reversed course under pressure from 23rd Ward Ald. Michael R. Zalewski and other local elected leaders.

CDA now says it will test the air in 10 percent of the 92 Southwest Side homes where they have confirmed noxious odors coming from RSIP windows. In all, they have received complaints from about 225 local homeowners.

“I’m not going to cave,” Zidarich said of CDA’s existing offer for in-home air quality testing. “I’m not going to have the testing done by the City of Chicago, because I don’t trust it one iota—and nobody else here should, either. They are hiding what they know.”

Homeowner concern over RSIP windows and doors was first reported exclusively by the Southwest News-Herald in early June, with a number of front-page follow-ups as the story developed over the summer.

Some of the windows and doors are emitting foul-smelling fumes. Homeowners, some of whom have been diagnosed with cancer in recent years, are highly concerned that the fumes may be toxic—causing or at least exacerbating their serious illness, and possibly having long-term, negative effects on the health of their children.

It appears that years of exposure to heat and sunlight may be breaking down the materials used in the manufacture of the windows and frames. One of those materials is polyvinyl chloride (PVC), a known carcinogen banned in some countries outside the U.S.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

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 and southern 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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Palos Hills man shot, killed on Komensky
A 24-year-old man from suburban Palos Hills was shot in the neck and killed as he sat in the driver’s seat of a vehicle parked in front of 4940 S. Komensky at 3:47 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 12. Andres Pina was pronounced dead at the scene. A 24-year-old West Lawn man who was a front-seat passenger in the vehicle was uninjured. He told police that when he heard gunshots, he reclined his seat all the way down. He told police he did not see the shooter. No one is in custody.

Thugs rob man walking to work
A 47-year-old Pilsen man was robbed at gunpoint as he walked down a sidewalk in front of 4800 S. Cicero at about 5:20 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 12. The victim told police he was walking to work when two men approached. One pulled a pistol and demanded his valuables. The victim handed over his cellphone and wallet, which contained about $300 cash. The thugs then ran away east on 48th Street. The victim described them only as Hispanic men and said they were gang members.

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Want to work directly with Chicago Police to prevent crime in your neighborhood? If you live in Beat 811 (see map), come to Good Shepherd Presbyterian Church, 5550 S. Merrimac, at 7:00 p.m. Tuesday, October 17 and attend your monthly CAPS meeting. 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.

Thugs rob man walking down sidewalk
A 34-year-old Chicago Lawn man was robbed at gunpoint as he walked down a sidewalk in front of 4800 S. Kilpatrick at 5:20 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 12. The victim told police that two men in black hoodies approached him, and one pulled a pistol and demanded his belongings. The victim handed over his cellphone and wallet, which contained about $100 cash. The robbers then ran away east on 48th Street. They were described only as Hispanic men.

Teen robbed of cellphone
A 15-year-old Archer Heights boy was robbed of his cellphone as he walked down a sidewalk at 4700 S. Lawndale at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 10. The victim told police that a man approached, snatched the cellphone and ran away. The offender was described as a black man age 18-20, about 5-foot-11 and 150 pounds, with brown eyes, short black hair and a medium complexion. He wore a black hoody.

Cashier foils armed thug at restaurant
A quick-thinking cashier foiled an armed robbery at Fon Fon Chinese Cuisine, 8253 S. Kedzie, at 1:25 p.m. Monday, Oct. 9. The cashier, a 48-year-old Brighton Park woman, told police that the robber initially posed as a customer; and that when she opened the cash register to put his money inside, the thug pulled a gun and tried to jump the counter. She quickly closed the drawer and ran to the back of the restaurant. The gunman then ran out the front door and west on 83rd Street. He was described as a black man age 20-30, about 5-foot-11 and 170 pounds, with brown eyes, black hair in dreadlocks and a medium complexion. He wore a blue baseball cap, a red Chicago Bulls t-shirt and light blue pants.

Charge Justice man with threatening tow-truck driver
A 40-year-old man from suburban Justice was charged with aggravated assault after
Yousef Darjbara
he allegedly used a knife to threaten a tow-truck driver at 10:45 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 10 on the street in front of 4532 S. Kolin. 

Yousef M. Darjbara, of the 8100 block of West 83rd Street, was apprehended a short time later by police searching the neighborhood. They said they spotted him sitting in the passenger seat of a vehicle travelling west on 46th Street, near Kolin.

The tow-truck driver, a 40-year-old Oak Forest man, told police he and Darjbara were engaged in a dispute over payment for towing services.

Bust Burbank man on burglary rap
A 21-year-old man from suburban Burbank was arrested after he was reportedly caught burglarizing La Fogata restaurant, 6600 S. Kedzie, at 1:49 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 12. 

Cristian Torres
Cristian Torres, of the 8100 block of South Lorel, was apprehended at the scene by police responding to a “burglary in progress” call made by a witness.

Police said they spotted Torres inside the establishment with a flashlight.

Police added that he smashed a window to gain entry and that the cash register had been torn from its mounting on a wall.

Neighbors saw something, didn't say something
A trio of burglars broke into four homes in the 3600 block of West 53rd Street, ransacking homes and stealing valuables. The crime was reported at 4:15 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 12 when a 47-year-old victim called 911 to report that the front door to his home was open. Stolen was a $600 Gucci watch. It was initially unclear what, if anything, was stolen from three other homes on the block. Descriptions of the three suspects were vague. Witnesses who saw the men told police that the men appeared suspicious, but apparently no one called 911 to report them.

Burglar drops screwdriver, flees garage
An Archer Heights man scared off a burglar he caught breaking into his garage in the 4400 block of South Keeler at 1:35 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 10. The victim told police that when he saw the offender and confronted him, the burglar dropped a flathead screwdriver and sped away in an older, beige Toyota Camry. The burglar was described as a Hispanic man age 40-49, about 5-foot-6 and 230 pounds, with black hair in a crew cut and a medium complexion. Nothing was stolen from the garage.

Vittum Park garage burgarized
Burglars forced open the overhead door of a garage in the 5100 block of South Leclaire and stole a tile cutter, leaf blower and a car jack. The crime was discovered by the victim, a 51-year-old man, at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 13.

Woman charged with driving on a suspended license, again
A 22-year-old Scottsdale woman was charged with obstructing identity, driving on a
Blanca Quezada
suspended license and driving an unsafe vehicle after a traffic stop in the 6300 block of South Pulaski at 12:13 a.m. Friday, Oct. 6.

Blanca Isabel Quezada, of the 8000 block of South Kedvale, was taken into custody and later released on bond.

According to police, Quezada has been charged with driving on a suspended license four times in the city, dating back to December 2015, when she lived in Back of the Yards.

Yards man charged with DUI in Hearst area
Jose Dominguez
A 22-year-old Back of the Yards man was charged with DUI, driving in reverse when inappropriate and improper lane usage after police curbed his vehicle in the 4600 block of South Laramie at 2:08 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 5.

Jose T. Dominguez, of the 4800 block of South Wolcott, was later released on bond.

Merchant sold cigs without tax stamps, police say
A 56-year-old Worth man was charged with selling cigarettes without the correct tax
Khaled Sheikhahmad
stamps at Mi Tiendita, 6832 S. Pulaski.

Khaled I. Sheikhahmad, of the 10600 block of South Depot Street, was arrested and later released on bond.


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