Archive for the ‘Local News’ Category
A CTA bus driver was rendered immobile by a passenger with a stun gun who robbed her and left her slumped at the wheel of her bus Saturday morning in Columbus Park in the Austin neighborhood, authorities said.
The 40-year-old driver was treated and released from Loretto Hospital after a 20-year-old man noticed her slumped at the wheel of her bus in the 5900 block of West Jackson Boulevard Saturday morning, said Chicago Police Department News Affairs Officer John Mirabelli.
Read Story: chicagotribune
The justices on Monday left in place a lower court ruling that found that the state’s anti-eavesdropping law violates free speech rights when used against people who tape law enforcement officers.
The law set out a maximum prison term of 15 years.
The American Civil Liberties Union filed a lawsuit in 2010 against Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez to block prosecution of ACLU staff for recording police officers performing their duties in public places, one of the group’s long-standing monitoring missions.
Opponents of the law say the right to record police is vital to guard against abuses.
Last May, a federal appeals court in Chicago ruled that the law “likely violates” the First Amendment and ordered that authorities be banned from enforcing it.
The appeals court agreed with the ACLU that the “Illinois eavesdropping statute restricts far more speech than necessary to protect legitimate privacy interests.”
The appeals court ruling came weeks before the NATO summit when thousands of people armed with smart phones and video cameras demonstrated in the city. Officials had already announced that they would not enforce the law against summit protesters.
Public debate over the law had been simmering since last summer.
In August of 2011, a Cook County jury acquitted a woman who had been charged with recording Chicago police internal affairs investigators she believed were trying to dissuade her from filing a sexual harassment complaint against a patrol officer.
Judges in Cook and Crawford counties later declared the law unconstitutional, and the McLean County state’s attorney cited flaws in the law when he dropped charges this past February against a man accused of recording an officer during a traffic stop.
The Associated Press contributed
Copyright © 2012, Chicago Tribune
Gov. Pat Quinn signed a new law Wednesday that makes it illegal for employers to ask job applicants or employees for passwords to their Facebook accounts or other online profiles.
Illinois is only the second state to do so. There are no exceptions to the law, not even for jobs requiring background checks.
The law takes effect Jan. 1.
“Privacy is a fundamental right. I believe that, and I think we need to fight for that,” said Quinn, who signed the measure at the Illinois Institute of Technology, where some students complained that online snooping has caused them to lose out on a job or led them to temporarily deactive an online profile.“
But the law does not stop bosses from viewing information that isn’t restricted by privacy settings on a website. Employers are also free to set workplace policies on the use of the Internet, social networking sites and email.
Penalties in any successful civil suit would start at between $100 and $300 and could end up costing employers more, said bill sponsor Rep. La Shawn Ford (D-Chicago).
Read Original Story Here: Suntimes.com
Sometimes a robber chooses the wrong victim and everything backfires. This was the case with a robbery in downtown Chicago last Friday.
A 50-year-old woman chased her robber for almost a mile, cornered him in an alley and then gave him a lecture. She must be in awesome shape.
The woman was riding a Chicago Transit Authority bus in the Loop just after midnight when police said Jenar Sanders, 18, swiped her wallet from her purse. He then jumped off the bus at Huron and State streets and took off, but he wouldn’t get very far.
Trailing Sanders, the woman alerted others as she ran down the street, according to the Chicago Tribune. The CTA bus driver and a hotel staff member at the Omni Hotel called the police.
The race came to a quick halt when police said Sanders ended up cornered in an alley off Superior Street between Wabash Avenue and Rush Street, surrounded by the victim and others who had joined the chase.
“She kept telling him God didn’t want him to steal her wallet,” a police source told the Tribune. (more…)
Who sent me The Rahmfather? I want to know. Please.
If you know the answer, let him or us know.
One morning, John showed up for work and found a mysterious portrait in his office. It was a large framed movie-style poster of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel as some Jewish Al Pacino – and the words, “JOHN FRANCIS KASS’S The Rahmfather.” (sic). Then follows the phrase “All the power on Earth can’t change Chicago.”
The portrait displays a strikingly handsome Rahmfather, thoughtful, pensive, his chin propped on his left hand, a hawk at rest. He is in a dark suit, conservative tie, wearing his Chicago flag lapel pin, and his steel-gray hair slightly spiky, just like Pacino’s in “The Godfather: Part III.”
Oh yeah, and the eyes. The eyes follow you wherever you go.
In Kass’ Tribune Article, he wrote that over the years his readers have sent him some amazing treasures but nothing is as cool as The Rahmfather.
When John sent a photo of the portrait to an aide of Rahm, the aide replied, “Oh, my God, He’s really going to want this.”
Kass replied, “Yeah, I know he’s going to want it. He’s going to want it bad. But tell him he can’t have it. He can send his buddy Jimmy DeLeo over with a box of cannoli and I’d say no. Rahm could put my head in a vise and still I wouldn’t give it to him.”
John asked the Tribune’s editorial cartoonist, Scott Stantis, to evaluate the painting. “This is really good work. This was done by a pro,” said Stantis.
But who painted it? Who sent it? John only knew that a few weeks ago, it was dropped off by a nondescript person at the Tribune Tower.
The story gets even more weird - the painting was addressed to: “JKFC John Kass Fan Club, 211 N. LaSalle Street, Suite 4250.”
There is no fan club at this address. Suite 4250 also does not exist. There are only 41 floors in the building.
Someone asked, “Maybe it was a joke?” An editor reminded John of what a wise columnist often says: In Chicago, when it comes to City Hall or the Outfit, there are no such things as coincidences.
John asked the editor, “Should I sweep it for bugs? Could this be a Trojan Rahm? The editor replied, “It’s up to you, but I would.”
That’s all Kass had to hear. Having the Rahmfather hanging on the wall behind him, peering over his shoulder as he is talking on the phone, he couldn’t take the chance.
So he drove the painting over to the U-Spy Store, 2406 W. Fullerton, to have it examined by counterintelligence experts. (more…)
Attorneys for the plaintiff, Thaddeus “T.J.” Jimenez, say they believe the award made Tuesday is the largest ever by a U.S. jury in a wrongful conviction case.
“Sometimes the criminal justice system makes a mistake,” said Jon Loevy, one of Jimenez’s attorneys. “In this case, we proved that’s exactly what happened.”
Indeed the criminal justice system does make mistakes. Many people are behind bars for crimes they did not commit. I just watched a program where an imprisoned man could not get help through the regular channels. He hired a private investigator who eventually dug up the truth, which turned out to be a cover-up. The man was given another trial and he was found not guilty. He had spent about 20 years in prison.
Most wrongfully convicted people are not fortunate enough to be exonerated, let alone receive the type of reward Mr. Jimenez received. Of course, you can’t put a price tag on someone’s life. You can never give back what that person lost.
The jury, after sitting through a two-week trial at the Dirksen Federal Building, deliberated for about a day. Given how quickly the jury deliberated, the evidence must have been overwhelmingly in Jimenez’s favor. (more…)