CHICAGO (CBS) — Over the weekend, a group of several people was attacked on the Roosevelt Red Line station platform.
While digging into that story, CBS 2 found some disturbing numbers about crime on the Chicago Transit Authority, particularly in July.
CBS 2 looked at data that showed from June to July of 2019, violent crime was up 61% on CTA property.
CBS 2’s Suzanne Le Mignot has more on the spike in numbers and what’s being done.
CBS 2 examined violent crime data from the City of Chicago Data Portal for CTA property for the past 18 years. In each year, there has usually been an average increase of 16% in violent crime from June to July.
This year, violent crimes increased by more than 60% between those two months. Bryan Garcia is one of the violent crime victims.
“When I try to open my mouth, just a little bit, it hurts right here. That’s where the bruise is,” Garcia said.
The 16-year-old says he was on the Pink Line in July when he was attacked and robbed.
“They then took my phone and hit me,” Garcia added.
The high school student said three men beat him and also slashed his ear.
“They kind of pushed me. They did all this and I don’t remember in what order. Three of them got on the tracks, grabbed my phone and started to run off off,” Garcia said.
The group that was attacked on the Red Line this past weekend was returning from a Boystown street festival when they were met by a large group of teens and young adults – estimated by the victims to be 15 to 20 people.
The members of the group believe they were attacked because they were gay, but police are investigating the attack just as a robbery.
The rise in crime comes at the same time the CTA continues to add cameras on platforms. Right now there are 32,500 cameras. But with nearly 400 crimes all year, the CTA has released surveillance images of only 15 suspects in police community alerts.
To be fair, it’s not completely known how many violent crimes have been captured on CTA surveillance. CBS 2 asked the CTA what’s behind the rise in crime.
The Chicago Transit Authority would not do an interview on camera, but in an email, the transit agency said crime trends need to be addressed by Chicago police, who patrol the CTA.
The Chicago Police Department told CBS 2 it has added 40 additional officers to patrol during the summer months.