Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) declared that Chicago is under lockout during the “planned days” after widespread looting broke out in the city early Monday morning.
The Chicago mayor announced during a news conference on Monday that she set up a community protection program that involved a lockdown and increased police presence “during the days ahead until we know our neighborhoods are safe.”
“These individuals engaged in what could only be described as courageous and extensive crime and destruction,” Lightfoot said. “To be clear, this had nothing to do with legitimate, protected first amendment expressions.”
Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown said the “heavy police presence” in downtown Chicago will continue “until further notice.” He said several agencies are developing a “multilayer plan” to respond to looting “based on lessons learned earlier this summer” during the George Floyd protests.
“This is a beautiful city and Chicago police will not let this selfish criminal act destroy what generations of hard work have built,” he told a news conference.
He said all officers will work 12-hour shifts and all days off have been suspended “until further notice.”
As a result of recent events, we use all available urban resources to monitor the situation and help protect our neighborhoods. pic.twitter.com/stVSWRlMCh
– Mayor Lori Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) August 10, 2020
The looting and vandalism broke out shortly after midnight on Monday, leading to nearly five hours of vandalism Reported Chicago Tribune. At least 100 people were arrested during the night, starting Monday morning.
Brown said 13 officers were injured during the looting, including a sergeant who was beaten with a bottle and another whose nose was broken during a beating with loot. A total of 400 officers were deployed during the night.
Officials said looting and vandalism were prompted by false reports of a police shooting of an unarmed teenager in the Englewood area. The police supervisor said during the briefing that the shooting involved a 20-year-old man who had shot at the police while he was fleeing. He is expected to survive.
“Tempers flared driven by misinformation when the afternoon turned into evening,” Brown said.
But the mayor said the perceived “motivation” does not matter.
“Whatever happened in our central and surrounding communities was wise, criminal behavior was pure and simple,” said Lightfoot. “And there can be no excuse for that. Period.”
As in many American cities, protests had erupted in Chicago in late May and early June over police brutality after Floyd died in Minneapolis police. Some of the protests became violent and erupted into looting, including in Minneapolis, Atlanta and Chicago, leading to curfews, but most remained peaceful.