Sections:

Article

The mayor's numbers game... After a deadly Fourth of July weekend, let's reflect on crime in Chicago using some public information that apparently the Attorney General missed

Reflecting back on a relaxing July 4th weekend listening to the bloodshed in the streets of Chicago, it was time for a little fact checking. At the time of writing (late night, Sunday July 6, 2014) this story, the murder count for the Independence Day weekend was 60 shot and 9 dead, making the national news. The morning newspapers had the body count at eight. But this was also the weekend that ended the week when one of Mayor Rahm Emanuel's White House colleagues, Attorney General Eric Holder, made a special trip to Chicago to praise the mayor for reducing crime.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder at the press conference at Chicago Police Headquarters praising the supposed reduction in crime in Chicago's schools since Rahm became mayor in 2001. So, it's definitely time for a closer look.

Substance News using public information and Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests has found that something is wrong with the claim by the mayor and CPS officials that CPS students are safest they ever have been.

This is on the heels of last week’s press event staged by Mayor Rahm Emanuel had a with US Attorney Eric Holder, Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy, and Chicago Schools Security Chief Jadine Chou. The event was at police headquarters, proclaiming how safe the Chicago schools are now under the leadership team of the Movie-Set Mayor.

And most of the press bought it. DNAinfo Chicago reported last week “CPS Has Safest Year Ever.” The mayor was quoted boasting that violence and crime with CPS students was down. The Tribune quoted Superintendent McCarthy saying, “This year we had the lowest rate of violence among students — as victims or offenders.”

Crime data from City of Chicago's Data Portal shows that in the first six months of 2014 gun incidents inside of school buildings are up 100% from last year.

Here is what the "data" show: For the entire 2013 Calendar year there were only 13 reported gun crimes inside of CPS buildings. Where in 2014, as of the last reported gun incident on June 11, 2014, (time stamped 13:20), Case Number HX299059 which was the thirteenth incident this calendar year the same amount as the entire year of 2013!

Year Gun Incidents (2014) only six months 13

(2013) 13

(2012) 12

(2011) 9

(2010) 14

(2009) 19

(2008) 23

(2007) 37

(2006) 37

(2005) 24

(2004) 25

Not being one to believe official Chicago statistics, just to double check the numbers, Substances News obtained some statistics through a FOIA request. The data obtained from CPS seem to indicate that crime and CPS students are not at their lowest levels in years.

According to CPS numbers which are not calculated by school year, something is not adding up. The average CPS student homicide rate is 38 per year, yet this year until March 2014 there were only 4 students murdered. If this was an anomaly it would have been correlated with the gun incidents inside of schools which is the exact opposite, up 100%. Looking even more at the CPS stats even these numbers do not show any decrease. In fact during Movie Set’s second year as mayor the number of CPS students murders actually went up. Seems someone forgot to give US Attorney General Eric Holder the same numbers that were given to Substance News. Or maybe since I am an ex-carpentry teacher my number are not adding up. Check for yourself, all you math teachers out there.

CPS Student Homicides*

Calendar Year Homicide (by Firearm) Homicide (non-firearm) Total

2014 (as of 3/13/14) 4 0 4

2013 32 2 34

2012 40 1 41

2011 35 1 36

2010 34 1 35

2009 39 5 44

(*CPS FOIA response (6/25/2014)

US Attorney General Holder quote from the Tribune, “Compared to three years ago, there were: 49 fewer students shot, a 50 percent drop from the year before; 12 percent fewer students murdered; more than 27,000 fewer out-of-school suspensions; 1,300 fewer referrals for expulsion and 1,000 fewer in-school arrests.”

On the lighter side, I guess we should explain the Mayor’s new nickname, which is the result of his propensity to stage scripted media events without allowing reports to ask questions and in many instances excluding reporters all together form certain events, including press conferences. It is the well-known fact that "Movie Set Mayor", or as I call him, "Movie Set", scripted a CNN documentary series “Chicagoland” to make him look good to a national audience of viewers. The scripted documentary was revealed after the Tribune requested by FOIA communications between the Mayors’ office and CNN producers.

When CNN tried to deny that it had staged some of the scenes in Cihcagoland, their claim was quickly refuted by Chicago Teachers Union President Karen Lewis, who told the union's members and the press that the CNN team had asked her to stage a "meeting" with Joey McDermott for their cameras and she had refused, noting that she had studied documentary filmmaking and that once you've staged a scene it's no longer a documentary.

According to the Tribune, “Everything the mayor does is stage-managed. Everything. That is the way he operates, so I'm not going to dispute that," Creator and executive producer Marc Levin said in an interview when asked about his emails that requested specific scenes featuring the mayor. "I would be the first to acknowledge that you don't get into Chicago … and get access without having to do a certain dance.”

Aldermen are even now talking about the fakeness of what come out of city hall. Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th) said staged and scripted events according to the Tribune.

Ok enough of the digression from the main story that the statistics reporting from the Mayor’s Office that the schools are safer than ever. The Tribune quoted the Superintendent of Police “This year we had the lowest rate of violence among students — as victims or offenders. Very clearly, the Safe Passage program which we invested an awful lot of resources in — we gained an awful lot of return on investment.”

There is not enough time to go into the spending (how much money on violence programs) part of this story right now. What can be done is a quick data analysis of public statistics on crimes inside of schools since 2001. The statistics can be downloaded from the City of Chicago Data Portal. Specifically for this part of the narrative we will use the stats from Crimes- 2001 to present.

I downloaded all the crimes inside of public school buildings since January 1, 2001. There were 1,381,872 data sets reported for this search from the aggregate data set of 5,564,381 (Crimes - 2001 to present). Then the information was filtered and sorted into an easy category to identify and quantify. The filter “gun” was applied to the column “Description” and then the data was sorted out by year. It should be noted that the data was left sorted by calendar year and not school year (January 1 to December 31).

The reason guns was picked was for the simple fact it is very difficult for any school administrator, police officer or other school staff to hide a gun crime inside of a school. That being said Substance News has uncovered multiple gun crime inside of CPS schools that have been covered up. Again, gun crimes are the most visible and the hardest to under report. The data set only included gun crimes inside public schools; left out were gun crimes on public school property, meaning outside of the building where most crimes occur, before and after school.

There should probably be some moral or wrap up to this story about right now. The problem is that there is none. What is clear is that in just a few hours of work, looking through public data, the numbers given by Movie Set are not adding up? What’s more embarrassing is that he is pulling in national politicians, giving them a script and there goes the story. What is interesting in the timing if the Holder event is the July 4 weekend? Seems like the shooters and murderers did not agree that crime in the city and schools is down. Just like the statistics seem to show that crime is not down.

Substance News is still in the process of clarifying the statistics from the CPS FOIA request. Additionally the entire dataset from City of Chicago's Data Portal is being analyzed for anymore discrepancies in eth crime reporting from CPS schools.



Comments:

July 8, 2014 at 8:24 AM

By: George N. Schmidt

South Chicago security cover up added to violence?

We were looking around to see whether anyone has been reporting the growing problem of gang violence -- including shootings -- in South Chicago and down on the East Side. And we can only find Substance of late. As we have noted, the situation of "killing crime" by "juking the stats" on crime in Chicago is not only a problem with the Chicago Police Department, as Chicago magazine recently reported, but also with Chicago Public Schools. When a teacher's car windows are shattered by gunfire near her school, the response of CPS should be to publicly report the shooting (a police report) and try and find out whether the shooing has involved anyone affiliated with the school . Instead, we find that CPS officials tried to cover up the shooting near Taylor Elementary School that Susan Zupan reported in Substance -- and then scream at our reporter for reporting the facts.

As usual, the cops on the street are not the ones who want these cover ups to continue. The gang problems inside Chicago's public schools increased last year as CPS officials created "restorative justice" (instead of suspensions) for even the nastiest bullying and threats without providing the schools with any additional help to actually run the programs (the "justice" court and the in-school suspensions, plus maybe a psychologist and counselor) inside each school.

Instead, we got the ridiculous narrative provided to the June 25 Board of Education by an MBA (Aarti Dhupelia) who has never taught, and then the follow up praise from a Board member who should know better about how putting an extra person in the bureaucracy (one Code of Conduct bureaucrat for each "Network") is a good idea.

Basically, CPS officials are "killing crime" inside the schools by forcing principals and teachers to ignore serious offenses, thereby reducing the suspensions.

I was the "security coordinator" at Bowen High School during the 1997 - 1998 school year. That year, we lost seven students and former students to gang murders. I watched on of them die. Then we got four shooters on First Degree murder. But if CPS's current "Code of Conduct" and clueless MBA bureaucracy had been in place, their obssessions with the bottom line, coupled with their ignorance of school realities, maybe would have forced our school not to suspend those murdered.

Right now, a bully can bully another kid and get "restored" by saying 'I'm sorry..."

That's apparently what happened to those Gold Coast bullies at Ogden International, as one person reported during the June 25 Board meeting. This is not the way to stop violence, but for a brief time, if all people view is that "data", it makes the mayor and CPS officials look good.

Especially if from their MBA perches they never have to be near the places where the bodies are falling and the shootings are taking place in real time. In December 1997, when I watched Bowen High School student Antwan Jordan die just outside the school with a bullet through his head, my first job was to confirm, by walkie talkie, that the victim was a "187." I had to wait for the paramedics for that.

Then my job became helping the police to identify the shooters and get some justice for the deceased. In 2014, under the new Code of Conduct, I have a hunch CPS officials, none of whom had ever taught, would have tried to reduce the stats by trying to order me or my principal not to suspend those shooters for murder.

July 8, 2014 at 10:47 AM

By: bob Busch

reality

Forget it George,only a few people will ever have the experiences of Ghetto Teachers.

Once we have done that we become pariahs,

or in the case of Ben Wilson absolute

tyrants.Try and enplane to a mother that you suspended little Johnny to save his life,

because throwing Gangster signs to a room full of Stones can be harmful to his health.All she wanted was for us to suspend the whole room

because little johnny could not be in a gang.Two weeks later little Johnny got popped on 79th st.Nobody believes us anyhow.

Add your own comment (all fields are necessary)

Substance readers:

You must give your first name and last name under "Name" when you post a comment at substancenews.net. We are not operating a blog and do not allow anonymous or pseudonymous comments. Our readers deserve to know who is commenting, just as they deserve to know the source of our news reports and analysis.

Please respect this, and also provide us with an accurate e-mail address.

Thank you,

The Editors of Substance

Your Name

Your Email

What's your comment about?

Your Comment

Please answer this to prove you're not a robot:

5 + 1 =