Some Worry Mob Attacks Are Encouraging Racial Profiling

CHICAGO (CBS) — A few “bad teens” may have started the series of mob attacks in Chicago. But is their action making life difficult for other teens who just want to enjoy the city? CBS 2’s Pamela Jones went to the beach Wednesday to find out.

Splashing around with friends is why a lot of teens come to North Avenue Beach.

“I just come out here to have fun,” said Eric Nelson.

They see the police helicopter, though, and they know they’re being watched. For some African American teens, it could mean racial profiling by other beachgoers. They feel targeted as potential troublemakers because of recent attack mobs in the city.

“Basically thinking I’m going to do violence because I’m African American. You know, said Tracy Silmon, “They probably think I’m going to take something down here or beat somebody up.”

“I realy don’t pay attention to it or whatever. I just hang out,” said Lance Dantzler.

Police say they don’t condone and will not tolerate profiling among their officers.

“We will not in any way, shape or form allow any member of the Chicago Police Department to engage in racial profiling,” said Chicago Police Department Superintendent Garry McCarthy.

He said the focus would be on the behavior of groups of young people, not their race.

“You can tell when they’re in a kindergarten group, or you can tell when they’re in a group that could be engaged in behaviors that we don’t like,” McCarthy said. “They’re going to be loud. They’re going to be, perhaps, taunting people and stuff like that, so it’s the behaviors. It’s not the individuals, and it’s large groups of kids.”

LISTEN: Newsradio 780 Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports

Teens we found hanging out today say they know the violence is wrong.

“It’s, I don’t know. Nonsense. Because there’s no reason to be doing all this,” said Eric Nelson.

Many community leaders say situation makes society label black males guilty by association.

“Almost any black man basically who wears a white shirt and dark pants is going to be looked at suspiciously. And that’s very unfortunate,” said Phillip Jackson.

He runs The Black Star Project and spent this evening training new mentors.

They’re volunteers who will hit the street to try to reach teens who would participate in the attacks.

“If a bunch of strong, positive black men walked up to those same boys, they would start listening,” Jackson told the volunteers.

He says there’s no excuse for the violence, but it’s important to understand some of the reasons why some teens choose attack mobs.

“It’s their way of having power. Unfortunately, it’s their way of expressing themselves.”

Jackson says the teens involved look at the luxe environment downtown and see status symbols and the power and money they represent. The teens may feel that their only chance to possess those things is to take it by force.

The Black Star Project has several upcoming programs to try to change that mentality, including an effort to connect at risk teens with the faith-based community.

  • Black Advocate

    As long as those arrested in assaulst across the city are uniformly Black young men and boys : the Dvonte Sikes, Travolus Picketts, Derodte Wrights, Corcoonian Washingtons, Mofolonious Pinkeys and the Bowelnifica Melenas of the world and if they and their kind are on the prowl, racial profiling makes good sense.

    • jesse jackson

      Chicago blacks should find their own beach on the south side and
      stay there. Gary, Indiana and smaller towns like Miller, Indiana have
      this and it works well. That way they can listen to rap music, eat
      fried chicken, use poor grammar, use and sell dope, shoot and rob each other,
      and nobody cares.

  • tom sharp

    More nonsense from CBS and the Black community: If Black teenage boys don’t want to be “profiled” as a potential criminals, they should avoid running around the streets and beaches in anything resembling large groups. They should also stop dressing and acting like the gang bangers. “If it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck…’ Otherwise, live with the consequences and shut up!

    • lisa

      i agree something got to give, I dont care if your white, black, brown or purple. you do the crime, you pay the time.. justb cause your black shouldnt give you a reason to hurt innocent people. Give it up, there is no excuse for harming innocent people. Maybe if everyone stops trying to justify peoples actions by race..will start fixing the real problem. Its stupidity that try to seperate us by race, and its pathetic..everyrace has good and bad. Stop making excuses ..We need to stick together

    • lisa

      i agree something got to give, I dont care if your white, black, brown or purple. you do the crime, you pay the time.. justb cause your black shouldnt give you a reason to hurt innocent people. Give it up, there is no excuse for harming i
      innocent people. Maybe if everyone stops trying to justify peoples actions by race..will start fixing the real problem. Its stupidity that try to seperate us by race, and its pathetic..everyrace has good and bad. Stop making excuses ..We need to stick together

    • dq

      so it’s okay for a 100% of a group to be treated like a smaller percentage?I understand how you feel because belive it or not blacks feel the same way but the truth is groups of all ethnicities hang out in large groups even females,and the sagging pants s@#$ is a fashion that I hate with all my heart but they do it in suburbia as well as the city(all races)I’m not justifying anything,the good kids do need to find away to seperate themselves it’s a shame but it’s life oh and all these kids have cellphones with a million capabilities taake pic and don’t post it on face book save them for the police.

  • Joshua Self

    I agree with both of your comments.

  • Geno

    Did I read The Black (really neccessary?) Star project manager comments correctly? Jackson is attempting to rationalize the balck teens REASONS for violence? The black teens are just expressing themselves with ILLEGAL behavior so they can possess these items? 1. Jackson should remove himslef as managing this project. 2. ANY teen expressing themselves this way should be arrested. 3. add assault to the charges as well. I can go on and on but i think you ALL get the point. Finally,,,,your either American or not PERIOD. Non of this hyphenated BS. If your BORN in Africa and immigrate to the USA,,then your african american, So lets start with correct descriptions and would be surprised how far that will benefit ANY individual.

  • LaVerite

    So…in summary… it’s appalling for the police to be vigilant for large groups of African American teens as a precautionary measure, and yet the entire mission of the “Black Star Project” is to target African American teens on the street in an attempt to dissuade them from participating in the violence. Racial hypocrisy at its finest.

    • Mike

      Best comment yet. A lot of blacks want racial profiling when it means another handout, but don’t want it if it doesn’t give them speicial treatment.

  • knock it off

    CBS, Chicago continues to bait the races with its could happen, will happen. The police I’m sure can tell the difference between legit beach goers, and 30-40 teens running up and down the streets and beaches. You do a disservice to the city with your apparent bashing of the police week to week. This is a dangerous problem and something has to be done to curb it, before someone is murdered.

  • Leroy Goldberg

    Black Star Project? Doesn’t the use of the word Black constitute racial profiling?

    • TOO SAD

      Leroy Goldberg,

      IT is me again: what was it with your racial comments again? Did you not say BLACK WOMEN need to keep their legs together and not give birth to furure criminals?

      • Leroy Goldberg

        That is correct…….have a blessed day.

      • Tyreese

        Hey TOO SAD, is that you NWA? S.O.S.

  • yea sure

    This is really something. People are getting robbed ,assaulted,beaten and this is where cbs2 decides to take the story. These newspeople are unbelieveable.What a bunch of phonies. What a shiit place to live.

    • johniceland

      yea sure :)

  • Fullerton and Cicero

    Please, coming from the hood and living in the hood, us “minorities” racial profile all the time. You ask a latino or a black guy who they’re looking for when they look over their shoulder, I guarantee it ain’t a group of Asians. And I agree with the other commenter, most 50 know who the trouble makers are. When we hear News reports that say Racial Profiling, we’re like “what the heck does that mean?”.

  • spartan2

    i agree with Spartans, it ‘s all about birth control and being able to properly raise, support your children… racial profiling exists, same with airport profiling of passengers… its unfortunate but true. Don’t ask the cops to stop the thuggings and then insist that they not racial profile, it’s only common sense…. also why don’t they use the southside beaches and stay away from the northside beaches? everyone would be alot better off…

  • Toon

    “It’s their way of having power. Unfortunately, it’s their way of expressing themselves.”

    Let these wothless punks express themselves in prison. I’m sure they’ll have a captive audience…

  • For the love of good common sense

    Another classic example as to why Illinois should pass a concealed carry law. Teenagers who can’t find better ways of “expressing” themselves are nothing short of criminals and should be locked up! And by the way, the police helicopter patrols those beaches constantly, not because 5 black kids are playing in the water. Gimme a break!

  • Smash Crasher

    Funny. No mention of the victims only pandering to an already spoiled and entitled race , most of who have no intention of ever supporting themselves of their spawn. More BS from the white liberal press.

  • Roberta Waker

    The solution is actually simple. If you are a black teen, don’t travel in a group of more than five and DON’T wear a WHITE t-shirt. That alone should get you off the radar. The guilty ones should be arrested, sent to jail, and have to pay the medical bills for the injuries they have caused. If they are minors – their parents can pay. Because injuries are getting more severe, Chicago might want to reconsider conceal and carry too.

    • Not Concerned or Afraid

      Roberta, I agree with you, but the Conceal and Carry law will not necessarily work. Look at Gary. It’s normally the Murder capital and they have the Conceal and Carry in Indiana.

      • Mr. Justice

        @ Not Concerned or Afraid. We all know what Gary is like. However, if you look at FBI Statistics it will show those cities that have conceal carry actually have a lower major crime rate. Also, when the Illinois Sheriff’s Association is in favor of Conceal Carry, what does that tell you. CCW is not the end all, BUT it would allow Law Abiding Citizens the opportunity to protect themselves, their loved ones, and their property. Forty-eight other states cannot be wrong. Thank you and Be Safe.

  • g-man

    Why they need birf control ???? The government pay for everything–food-medical—-housing—-more babies equal more money—don’t matter who be the daddy

    • johniceland

      great one

    • bama

      u forgot education free too

      • g-man

        They get free education but it does not come with enough glue because it sure don’t stick. hahahahahahahahahaha

    • Right

      Stop voting for liberal dummycrats and a lot of public aid will go away.

      • TOO SAD

        RIGHT, you are an idiot.

      • StupidPeopleFTW

        Yea, that’d be awesome… then you’d have these same groups running around, but they’d be even more broke and desperate… you, sir, are a true genius!

  • g-man

    So now the news wants to classify a race group as black when they might be the victim of something but the news was not classifying them as black at first when they were the offenders. Double standard as usual from the liberal media. Why did the news not come to the defense of all those white victims who were race profiled by the black offenders ???????

  • Bill

    Out of the risk of offending any member of any group,I think we should just let them run wild and do what they want so they won’t be offended! It’s true that not all are bad of any group,but lets get real!!!This political correctness is empowering the thugs to do what they want because all that they have to do is identify themselves as being part of the “good ones”and if you don’t believe me,I’ll sue and then I can leave the hood!!!!Rahm is bringing change to Chicago!No more tourists,jobs are leaving.He thinks education is the answer!No a cultural revolution within a culture that the government keeps propping up with taxpayer dollars is the answer!Take care of your kids,marry your women, demand job training,take responsibility for your lives and community!Quit looking to the government to feed yoyuclothe you,house you,give you a free cell phone,cheap internet service,etc.These kids are angry because they need healthy mentors,not gangs!The politicians don’t really care about you.They just want your vote!Wake up!These social program give-a-ways promotes dependency,NOT independence!It’s like giving a alcoholic a drink to keep them calm and hope they go to sleep soon so they don’t do something stupid!Rahm made millions because of his political connections.Why doesn’t he use some of his gains made off the backs of all people and invite people into HIS home to help close the digital divide,as he calls it!What about the library?Too far to walk?Redistribute some of your own wealth,Mr. mayor,NOT MINE!!!

  • Citizen for a Livable Chicago

    Racial profiling or behavioral profiling it does not matter. Stop them and get their guns before they kill more people. I bet the punk that shot the two children last night at Avondale Park is the typical person who complains about profiling. The City told the police not to profile 5 years ago and look at the spike in shootings since then, not only on the south side but all over the city. Society can’t have it both ways. The only one who worries about racial profile is the criminal element.


    The only ones racially profiling are these punks who are out there. They did this to themselves. But typical – blame someone else. It’s easier than taking accountability for your actions. The black community needs to stop it’s whining and do something about those giving them this bad rap. No pun intended.

  • Debbie

    Ridiculous! If this was a group of white kids chasing and attacking black people, this would be an entirely different story!

    • Mr Wizard

      Cry my a freaking river. You people always moan about this instead of taking responsibility. Right now it’s the black gangs that have been identified, so as someone else said, if it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, then just maybe it is a duck.

  • enuf is enuf

    enuf is enuf

    Three Charged With Robbing, Beating UIC Student On CTA Bus
    Man Shot, Wounded By Police In Garfield Park
    Four Attack, Rob Man On Brown Line Train Near North Side
    Two men shot during South Side confrontation
    Garry McCarthy: Officers seek to break up flash mobs before they form
    4 wounded in afternoon South Side shootings
    3 charged with robbing 2 on CTA bus
    Victim mugged on Near North Side CTA property
    Vigil held for teen killed in gunfire outside birthday party
    Mob attacks pose first challenge for Rahm, McCarthy
    Another Attack Reported Downtown
    McCarthy: 29 Arrests Already
    Guardian Angels Target Flash Mobs

    • Philip J. Wayne

      I live in the attack area and the only visible constant presence have been the Guardian angels. The large groups of officers are present for a brief moment and this doesn’t help.

  • enuf is enuf

    enuf is enuf

    I forgot to add,thats just todays headlines. It’s gonna be a long summer here in the windy. Maybe Rahm will post the income these folks are getting from their work.Just for openess in govt of course. With those police officers salaries you couldn’t pay me twice the money to do that job.

  • Tibble

    Too bad! Keeping the citizens and tourists of Chicago needs to be paramount! Who cares if there is even the possibility of racial profiling? Too bad if Blacks are being inconvenienced by Chicago’s Finest? Protect Us, that’s their job! Until the Blacks stop targeting us Whites they’ll just have to be inconvenienced a bit. Get over it! Keep Chicago safe!

  • Nick Thompson

    I didn’t know they were black, the chicago media hasn’ reported race, just that they were youths.

    • Save OUR Chicago

      Of courrse it was reported they were Blacks. Where have you been living, under a rock? The media has been all over this story. READ. LISTEN, ABSORB and LEARN.

  • The Truth

    So if the “bunch of strong, positive black men” of the “black star project” can figure out who the at risk black teens are, then why can’t the police figure out who they are too? OBTW, many of the police officers are strong, positive black men…or was that conveniently overlooked?

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