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Tag: Chicago

FBI Prepared to Help Chicago Combat Surge in Murders

police tapeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is prepared to help Chicago deal with the outbreak of violence in 2016, and President-elect Donald Trump said he’s prepared to listen.

Sources told Fox News that the FBI wants to help the Windy City after 3,550 people were shot and 762 murdered in 2016. 

Sean Spicer, spokesman for the Trump transition team, said the president-elect is worried about the gun violence.

“Obviously I think the President-elect would be willing to listen to anything that can be done to make sure that Americans are kept safe and if the FBI has ideas about how to do that – he would definitely be all ears to do that,” Spicer said.

In a Tweet on Monday, Trump suggested he may bring in federal help if Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel can’t solve the problem on his own.

“Chicago murder rate is record setting – 4,331 shooting victims with 762 murders in 2016. If Mayor can’t do it he must ask for Federal help!” Trump tweeted.

Still, Chicago is not expected to have the highest murder rate in the country. Preliminary records show Detroit and Baltimore had more shootings and murders per capita.

Chicago Alderman Who Pledged to Clean Up Graft Was Indicted on Corruption Charges

Chicago Alderman Willie Cochran

Chicago Alderman Willie Cochran

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Willie Cochran, a Chicago alderman who pledged to clean up corruption, was indicted Wednesday for allegedly stealing tens of thousands of dollars in charitable donations for poor children and seniors.

The 15-count indictment alleges Cochran used the funds to gamble and pay for his daughter’s college tuition, the Chicago Tribune reports. 

Cochran also is accused of sharking down a liquor store and taking a bribe in connection with a blight-busting federal program.

The 64-year-old South Side alderman was charged with 11 counts of wire fraud, two counts of extortion and two counts of bribery.

Cochran’s arraignment is scheduled for Dec. 23.

FBI: Murders Surged in U.S. in 2015, While Violent Crime Rose Nearly 4%

screen-shot-2016-09-27-at-7-18-08-am

Via FBI.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Murders surged 10% in 2015 over the previous year, while violent crime rose nearly 4% in the same time period, according to the FBI’s annual crime report.

The increase comes after two years of declines in violent crime in the U.S.

Still, violent crime rates remain much lower than two decades ago.

“The report shows that there was an overall increase in violent crime last year, making clear what each of us already knows: that we still have so much work to do,” Attorney General Loretta E. Lynch said Monday in Little Rock, the Washington Post reports. “Violent crime endangers lives, destroys families and paralyzes neighborhoods … In some ways, violence affects all of us — and so all of us have a responsibility to end it.”

The largest increases in homicide came in Chicago, Baltimore and Washington D.C.

“But the report also reminds us of the progress that we are making,” Lynch said. “It shows that in many communities, crime has remained stable or even decreased from the historic lows reported in 2014. And it is important to remember that while crime did increase overall last year, 2015 still represented the third-lowest year for violent crime in the past two decades.”

Report: ‘The ATF Is Discriminating on the Basis of Race’ During Stings

atf badgeBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The ATF singled out black people and Latinos while conducting controversial stings in Chicago, according to a report released by the Justice Department. 

The report found “strong, consistent and statistically significant evidence” of racial profiling.

Of the 94 people arrested during undercover stings in Chicago, 91% were black or hispanic.

The chances that agents didn’t racially profile was 0.1%, according to a Columbia Law School professor Jeffrey Fagan, who prepared the report.

The investigation concluded that “the ATF is discriminating on the basis of race.”

The ATF couldn’t be reached for comment this morning.

Other Stories of Interest

John Brown Named SAC of the FBI’s Administrative Branch in Los Angeles

fbi logo large

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

John Brown, assistant special agent in charge at the FBI’s Chicago office,  has been named special agent in charge of the Administrative Branch for the Los Angles Division, the FBI announced. He assumes the new post at the end of October.

Brown joined the FBI in 1999 and was first assigned to the Chicago Division, where he worked primarily counterintelligence matters,  a press release said.

In 2004, Brown was assigned to Iraq to support FBI Operations.

Brown has also served as a senior executive in the FBI’s Cyber Division, a unit chief in the FBI’s Counterterrorism Division and as a supervisory special agent of an international terrorism squad in Chicago.

In 2010 and 2011, he served on active duty with United States Army in Kandahar, Afghanistan.

 

Judge Doesn’t Budge on Lowering Blagojevich’s Sentence Despite Apology and Daughters’ Tears

Ex-Gov. Blagojevich

Ex-Gov. Blagojevich

By Allan Lengel
ticklethewire.com

Rod Blagojevich and his family hoped that a federal judge in Chicago on Tuesday would reduce the ex-Illinois governor’s 14-year sentence during a resentencing hearing. But that didn’t happen.

The Chicago Sun-Times reports that Blago’s  young daughters wept openly in the front row of a federal courtroom and clutched their mom. Their dad, who is locked up at a federal prison in Colorado, appeared in court via a video transmission. He now sports stark white hair.

“I made mistakes,” Blagojevich, 59, said, the Chicago Sun-Times reports. “I regret those mistakes and those judgments. And I’m sorry, your honor. I wish I could find a way to turn the clock back and make different choices. But that is not possible.”

But U.S. District Judge James Zagel was unmoved and reinstated the 14-year prison sentence despite an appellate court ruling that tossed five of Blagojevich’s convictions last year,  the paper reported.

Other politicians who have gotten stiff sentences for public corruption convictions in recent years include former New Orleans Congressman William Jefferson, who got 13 years and former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick, who was sentenced to 28 years.

Chicago Woman Says FBI Raided Her House by Mistake, Left Without Explanation

police lightsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A Chicago woman was at home with her fiancé when she said the FBI stormed into her home, failed to show a warrant and left without an explanation.

“They were banging at first and they said ‘put your hands up,'” Rachel Rodriguez told NBC Chicago. “I was frightened cause I didn’t know if they were going to shoot me or not.” 

Rodriguez, who has some of the raid captured on video, said the SWAT team raided the wrong home.

Chicago police said they have no records of the raid.

“They got inside, they had us sit down on the floor, they pointed guns at us,” she said. “They were looking for a guy, I don’t even know his name, I don’t even know this guy.”

Rodriguez said no one has answered her questions.

“They just left, they said they didn’t find the guy, the guy’s not here,” she said. “I almost had a panic attack, I was crying … I want to know why my house, and I’m hoping not just cause I’m Latino.”

Suburban Chicago Man Who Shot 2 FBI Agents Committed Suicide

ct-fbi-agents-shot-park-forest-photos-20160524-013

Melvin Toran, 50.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A reputed gang member accused of shooting two FBI agents before he was found dead in suburban Chicago committed suicide, the Cook County medical examiner’s office said Wednesday.

Melvin Toran, 50, turned a gun on himself, the Chicago Tribune reports. 

An FBI SWAT team swarmed his house Tuesday morning to serve an arrest warrant when a shootout occurred, injuring two FBI agents.

The agents were released from local hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries.

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