Friday, November 9, 2012

Illinois State Police: Wanted in the 32nd District

This past Monday November 5, 2012. there were some guest at the Park Manor Neighbors Community Council (PMNCC) meeting. A television reporting team and several reporters were present at the meeting due to the following document.
Press Thapedi Park Manor  After opening with a prayer, the meeting started out with Andre Thapedi, State Representative 32nd District. The 32nd district includes portions of Woodlawn, Greater Grand Crossing, Englewood, Park Manor and Chatham. Representative Thapedi updated his constituents on what was happening in Springfield as well as where he stood on several pieces of legislation.

The major portion of his time was spent on his proposal that he plans to submit to Governor Pat Quinn. Representative Thapedi stated that he was going to request that the Illinois State Police who currently patrol the Dan Ryan expressway expand their coverage area a minimum of one mile east and west of the expressway to assist the Chicago Police Department. There were some puzzled looks in the room, but Thapedi explained that the dan Ryan Expressway fell into the 32nd District and there are several street owned by the State of Illinois in the district, therefore he had a right to make this request. Also, he explained that the Illinois State Police patrolling the Dan Ryan is a result of an Intergovernmental agreement that dates back to the Harold Washington administration.

Representative Thapedi stated he could not stand back and do nothing for his constituents and felt that "out the box" solutions were necessary. He stated his office gets inundated with calls about crime and shootings. He further stated he could not see any reason why a parked State Police car could not assist the Chicago Police, He used a popular phrase "Really" several times to emphasize that this made sense. Some in the audience compared this to the calls several other State Representative have made to call on the Illinois National guard. Others called it the creation of a police state and others called it grandstanding and non innovative. Representative Thapedi stood firm that this was a quick fix but anything that saved the lives of young people was worth looking into. Also,he again reiterated that there is already cooperative between the two law enforcement agencies and the Illinois State Police have valuable resources that the Chicago Police Department does not have.

Representative Thapedi proposal overall was well received by members of PMNCC who have seen a spike in violent crime. He stated his office was researching all the necessary legalities and was open to input from the members. He office was also circulating a petition that he also plans to submit to the Governor. Lastly, he was asked did he think Mayor Rahm Emanuel would sign off on this agreement and he stated he is a State Representative, but could not see why the mayor would not welcome the assistance.

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