Police are offering a $3,000 award in their search for the vandals who tagged a memorial honoring officers who were killed in the line of duty.
A volunteer with the Chicago Police Memorial Board discovered graffiti on the north end of the memorial located near the intersection of 18th Street and McFetridge Drive on Thursday about 6 p.m., police said.
Former Chicago Police Supt. Phil Cline, who is the executive director of the memorial board, said the graffiti did not cover any of the 562 names listed on the memorial, which was built in 2006.
Cline said the city’s graffiti blasters removed the spray paint in time for the Chicago Police Department’s Father’s Day mass on Sunday at 10 a.m.
“We wanted it removed as quickly as possible,” Cline said. “We get a lot of families of fallen officers at the mass, and it would be disturbing for them to see the memorial desecrated.”
Father Dan Brandt, who will help lead the mass and is a member of the memorial board, said he was shocked to learn someone had vandalized the memorial.
“That’s lower than low,” Brandt said. “That’s sacred ground. To deface that memorial is just disrespectful.”
The Chicago Police Chaplain’s Ministry and the Chicago Police Memorial Board will award $3,000 to anyone who offers information that leads to an arrest and conviction, according to a community alert issued by Area Central detectives.
Cline said Brandt and memorial board member Bill Condon each donated $1,000 for the reward.
Anyone with information about the vandalism can contact Area Central detectives at (312) 747-8382.