CHICAGO (CBS) – As the city was closing out 2012 overnight, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy was out on patrol with his officers, and even helped make a felony arrest.
The superintendent assisted officers during a traffic stop in the 5500 block of West Congress Parkway, when the officers recovered a handgun from 23-year-old Montrez Armstead.
Armstead was charged with felony aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, police said.
McCarthy began the night looking over the blotter at Police Headquarters, before hitting the streets with his officers.
That rise in homicides was due in large part to a huge spike in homicides in the first quarter, but McCarthy said he’s confident this year will be different. He wants to build trust with local residents.
“There are studies that show that when the community has greater trust in the police, people tend to comply with the law at a greater rate,” McCarthy said. “Not being too sarcastic, I think probably the second area that I would love to have a better relationship with, is with the press quite frankly. Because getting the message out of the reality of what’s happening is sometimes difficult around here.”
McCarthy said, while murders were up 66 percent in the first quarter of 2012 compared to the first quarter of 2011, in the fourth quarter of 2012, they were down 16 percent from the fourth quarter of 2011.
While making the rounds overnight, McCarthy visited the Grand Crossing District station, one of a number of districts where he replaced the commander last year.
“There was an old style of policing that didn’t work, especially in these more volatile times,” Grand Crossing District Cmdr. Glenn Evans said. “The old attitude is essentially just patrol around, not stop these individuals, not challenge them. … Letting a lot of these gang bangers intimidate them. But that’s all going to change.”
Since the shakeup in the Grand Crossing District, homicides there have gone down 26 percent, and shootings have gone down 16 percent.