CHICAGO (CBS) – Chicago’s top cop suggests he’s on board with the mayor’s plan to have CeaseFire operatives try to help defuse violence in the city.
Garry McCarthy previously expressed reservations about the CeaseFire organization, which employs ex-offenders with street credibility as violence “interrupters” among residents of troubled neighborhoods. The police superintendent faulted CeaseFire for bypassing the police as it negotiates truces.
On Thursday, McCarthy said there was no friction between him and Emanuel over the city’s partnership with the organization.
“I work for the mayor, and, you know, he and I have an agreement … what he says goes,” McCarthy told CBS 2 Chief Correspondent Jay Levine.
The superintendent’s remarks came during a news conference about a drug seizure that kept $40 million worth marijuana out of the hands of street gangs. But that success was overshadowed by this week’s fatal shooting of a 7-year-old Chicago girl on the West Side who was caught in gang crossfire.
Mayor Emanuel was markedly upset as he lashed out on gangbangers.
“I think an honest discussion is, ‘Who is this gangbanger shooting another gang member near a kid?’ That’s not about crime, it’s about values,” the mayor said.
Said McCarthy: “I take every one of these shootings personally, and that’s a pretty big weight to bear.”
CeaseFire will get $1 million from the Chicago Department of Public Health to target crime in the Grand Crossing and Ogden police districts – on the South Side and West Side, respectively. That funding will place an extra 20 CeaseFire workers in each district.