Police union files safety complaint

December 6, 2011 3:04:11 PM PST
The Fraternal Order of Police has filed a safety complaint in Chicago.

The police union is especially concerned about safety at the Harrison District.

"There is more security at a Chicken Shack at this neighborhood than at a police desk," said Pat Camden of the Fraternal Order of Police.

What Camden is talking about is the front desk inside Area 4 Police Headquarters. Located in the high-crime Harrison District, the station has had four security breaches in the last six months.

On June 7, a man entered the station, threw computers on the floor and assaulted at least one officer. On Aug. 11, a man walked in with an unloaded assault rifle. On Sept. 10th, a man jumped onto the station's front desk screaming and waving his fists. And finally, on Nov. 24th, a man walked into the station carrying a fully-loaded assault rifle.

"Put up a gate, a fence," Camden said. "We have a wrought iron fence that separates the first floor from the second floor in place already. The same thing could be done in front of the desk with an electronic lock on it that would allow people that have legitimate business to get in."

Camden said the FOP filed a number of safety recommendations back in February that address this very issue. In response, a spokesperson for the police department Tuesday said those recommendations have been submitted as service requests.

"Officer safety is paramount," according an official CPD statement. "CPD has a safety committee which meets with the FOP on a regular basis to discuss any officer safety concerns they may have. We will discuss this with them." The FOP says part of the problem is that this is an older building. Newer stations already have higher desks that limit exposure. Officers at Area 4 wouldn't speak to us on camera today, but a couple admitted that they would feel better if they had either a gate or a bulletproof enclosure.

"When you're sitting at a desk that is provided by the city, there should be some sense of a secure feeling at that desk." Camden said. "Right now that is not the case."

Load Comments