After several weeks of escalating violent robberies and carjackings in Lincoln Park, Ald. Michele Smith held a safety march for residents on Thursday night, part of an effort to encourage residents to stand up for their neighborhood.
Chicago police have reported at least 15 thefts and carjackings in the area in the past 10 days alone. These crimes have left residents nervous, and now they are calling for action to remedy the situation.
“I think there are a handful of bad actors, a handful of people and teams taking advantage of situations,” said resident Paul Mokdessi.
“Every day I look behind me, I look over my shoulder,” added resident Dana Green. “I don’t go out if I’m alone.”
Residents of nearby Lake View are also reporting an increase in crime, including Michael Salvatore, the owner of Heritage Bikes and Coffee. Security video taken at the store showed two thieves smashing the front window of the business, fleeing with one of the store’s unique specialty bikes.
“The day before, we had sold this bike in the window,” he said. “So not only am I losing that money, but that sale, that profit, and that customer.”
In response, Chicago police said they were adding about 50 more officers to the area, with undercover cops and bike patrols ready to hit the streets in both North Side neighborhoods.
Chicago police are also canceling days off, with officers losing a regular day off due to current crime patterns, according to the department.