Chicago Police officers found to have committed misconduct face “inconsistent” and “unfair,” discipline, according to an audit released Thursday by the city’s watchdog.
Inspector General Deborah Witzburg vowed to tackle Chicago’s “legitimacy deficit” by holding city officials who abuse the public trust accountable while working to reform the Chicago Police Department in order to reduce violence.
A unanimous endorsement of the Ethics and Government Oversight Committee means Deborah Witzburg’s nomination is set to win the approval of the full City Council April 27.
Two sources told WTTW News that Lightfoot will ask the Chicago City Council to confirm Deborah Witzburg as the city’s inspector general. Witzburg resigned as Chicago’s deputy inspector general for public safety on Nov. 1, saying she would apply for the top job.
In her first public remarks on the search for a replacement for former Inspector General Joseph Ferguson, Lightfoot said the five-member search committee charged with reviewing applications from those who want to investigate allegations of wrongdoing and malfeasance by city employees, contractors and vendors was working diligently to recommend finalists.
Black Chicagoans were “overwhelmingly disproportionately” stopped by Chicago Police officers across the city, including in parts of the city that Chicago Police consider to be “high crime” areas, according to the report issued by interim Inspector General William Marbeck.
While Chicago has been without a permanent inspector general, former 11th Ward Ald. Patrick Daley Thompson became the 37th alderperson to be convicted of a crime since 1969. Alds. Ed Burke (14th Ward) and Carrie Austin (34th Ward) are awaiting trial after pleading not guilty to bribery and corruption charges.
The resignation of Deborah Witzburg as the deputy inspector general for public safety comes 15 days after former Inspector General Joseph Ferguson left office at the end of his third term in office.
In a follow-up to its June 2020 report, the Chicago Office of Inspector General on Thursday found the CPD still cannot ensure it is producing all relevant records in its possession for criminal and civil litigation.
According to a new report from the city’s inspector general, alerts by the gunshot detection system ShotSpotter used by the Chicago Police Department “rarely” lead to evidence of a gun crime.
Fewer than 1 in 10 ShotSpotter alerts between 2020 and 2021 resulted in evidence of a gun-related criminal offense being found, according to a new report from Chicago’s independent watchdog.
For the first time since a damning 2019 audit was released by the city’s watchdog, police officials defended their continuing use of records that list approximately 135,000 Chicagoans as members of gangs, citing their need for the data to prevent “retaliatory violence.”
Chicago’s Office of Inspector General found that while Black candidates make up 37% of the initial officer applicant pool, they comprised just 18% of the candidates who were ultimately invited to the CPD’s Police Academy.
Just 3.5% of the approximately 5,500 residential search warrants served by Chicago police officers between 2017 and 2020 targeted white Chicagoans, according to a new report from the inspector general’s office.
As Chicago reeled — again — from the police killing of a teenager recorded on video, Inspector General Joseph Ferguson offered aldermen a way to reverse what he called the city’s “long history” of covering up police misconduct. “We are out of runway with respect to the public’s patience and beliefs that we care to reform,” he said.
The author of a scathing report from the city’s Office of Inspector General says the senior leadership of the Chicago Police Department failed both their front-line officers and the public during the unrest that followed the killing of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer.