Families of Chicago murder victims want same urgency in their cases as CPD Officer Huesca's received

Michelle Gallardo Image
Wednesday, May 8, 2024
Families of Chicago murder victims want more urgency from CPD
The families of Chicago violence victims want the same urgency in their cases as CPD Officer Luis Huesca's murder received.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- There was a call for action from Chicago families hurt by gun violence Wednesday.

They want the people who took the lives of their loved ones to be brought to justice, with the same urgency given to fallen Chicago police officers.

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Equality in justice: That's what one speaker after another called for Wednesday morning, as they rallied outside Chicago's Area One Police Headquarters.

That group of detectives was able to arrest and charge a suspect in Chicago police Officer Luis Huesca's murder in 10 days. But other cases in the area have languished for months or even years, some said Wednesday.

"I'm upset. I don't eat. I don't sleep. I'm angry. I want that phone call," one murder victim's mother Juanita Arias said.

Arias' son, Adam Moreno, was gunned down in Brighton Park last September.

It's a struggle, she said, to get someone to even take her calls.

It's the same for Maria Puga, whose 21-year-old son, Kobe, was murdered in October, while out to dinner with friends in Pilsen.

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Puga said in Spanish, "We had to ask for another detective because, if he wasn't doing his job, we need another one."

And then there is the murder of 9-year-old Ariana Molina just last month. Molina was gunned down outside a family gathering that left 10 other relatives injured, including three children.

"What's the difference between my daughter and the police officer? She was only 9 years old. She didn't deserve this," father Jose Molina said.

And while detectives on Wednesday took the time to speak to Molina's father, he and his family still wait.

"It's really hard, knowing she's not here, and they cannot find who did it," Molina said.

A Chicago Police Department spokesperson on Wednesday pointed to the progress that's been made in recent years to improve the city's clearance rate, including investments in smart policing technology.

Superintendent Larry Snelling himself last week denied there is any preference given to solving police officers' murders.

"I can guarantee you, the work that is being done on cases that are not as high-profile, the same level of work is going into it," Snelling said.

CPD, however, admits much remains to be done.

Last year's homicide clearance rate was the highest it's been since 2019, and, yet, it only barely surpassed half of all cases citywide at 51.7%.