The Chicago Police Department has added 1,000 more officers to city streets following the mass looting in the city's downtown and neighborhoods earlier this week, Supt. David Brown said.
The department also extended Chicago officers' hours and canceled days off, he said, reiterating, "this is our town; it doesn't belong to the criminals."
"Don't let these criminals run you out of this beautiful city," Brown said in a news conference Thursday to detail plans for weekend safety following widespread looting that left many businesses damaged and resulted in more than 100 arrests. "Our department, our police officers will risk their lives to protect you. Not in our town, not in our city."
Brown sent a blunt message to potential weekend looters, warning them that "CPD is going to arrest you" and use various strategies to prevent caravans from coming downtown, including puncturing tires.
"We are going to deploy all tactics necessary to prevent and stop looting," Brown said. "If that means deploying stop strips to puncture your tires if you're caravaning cars to loot. We will disable your cars to prevent the caravan and we will work very hard to do so. If that means deploying tow trucks to impound your cars that are caravaning to loot, CPD will do so. If that means blocking off streets and boxing in caravans of looters, CPD will work to do so."
Access to the city's central business district will remain restricted during overnight hours throughout the weekend, with street closures, bridge lifts, ramp blockages and transit reroutes all expected. Check points will allow only residents and area employees to enter.
In addition, a demonstration scheduled to take place in Chicago this weekend is aiming to shut down the Dan Ryan Expressway, mirroring a now-historic anti-violence march that closed the same roadway in July 2018.
Hosted by several area organizations, the protest, titled "Black Lives Matter March: SHUTDOWN OUR DAN RYAN," is set to step off at noon Saturday at 39 W. 47th Street.
Illinois State Police confirmed they are aware of the protest and have been in contact with protest organizers "to set up a safe route of travel."