A growing segment of Boystown residents are speaking out about increased violence in the neighborhood.
After a video of a man in Boystown being beaten and stabbed hit the Internet earlier this week, the area’s Alderman, Tom Tunney, urged residents to remain alert and report suspicious or illegal behavior.
Now Tunney has turned his attention from residents to the Chicago Police Department.
Tunney has suggested that a special unit be created for the ward that is home to so many entertainment venues, according to the Chicago Tribune. His idea for the special unit came from a similar plan devised years ago to protect Rush Street.
Tunney did not outline details for his plan and did not give any indication of where he expects the extra officers to come from, but he did say that he wants the unit to support the existing beat officers in the area.
The area has experienced several violent crimes in the past weeks, and Tunney wants to turn the attention of officers in the direction of his ward, particularly the area of North Halsted Street.
Tunney, however, is flexible on a solution to the problem and has not placed the burden squarely on the shoulders of police officers. He is encouraging Lakeview residents to attend a “Chicago Alternative Policing Strategy” meeting tonight at 7 p.m. that would encourage community policing and resident vigilance.
The residents of the Boystown community have also been eager to see crime decrease and have organized in a Facebook group called “Take Back Boystown.” The group currently has over 3,000 members.
Tunney has requested the numbers on how many officers police the area between 10 p.m. and 6 a.m. and if he finds them to be insufficient he will continue to ask for more officers in the later hours.