Graffiti sprawled on Marilyn Monroe statue’s leg

Poor Marilyn — even in death people just can’t leave her alone.

The 26-foot-tall statue of Marilyn Monroe on Michigan Avenue, which depicts the legendary actress in her iconic pose from the 1955 movie, “The Seven Year Itch,” was defaced sometime late Friday or early Saturday, police said.

The black markings on the right calf of the statue appear to contain the letters, “Pi$tola,” a picture of a heart and the word, “Ariel.”

Police weren’t notified of the graffiti until 2:40 p.m. Saturday, police said.

The statue went up this summer in Pioneer Court, on the 400 block of North Michigan, and is scheduled to remain there through spring of 2012. It has attracted the attention of passersby, residents and tourists alike, and many have stopped to gaze up at it or have their photos taken next to — or under — it.

As of Saturday evening no arrests had been made and it was not known if police were looking at any suspects in connection to the incident.

from the Sun-Times


Man throws molotov into grocery store

Bond was set at $2 million Monday for a Sleepy Hollow man accused of throwing a Molotov cocktail-style fire bomb inside a crowded grocery store in northwest suburban Algonquin.

The incident occurred at about 12:15 p.m. Sunday at the Joe Caputo & Sons store in the 100 block of South Randall Road.

According to Deputy Police Chief Steve Kuzynowski, 24-year-old Fabian J. Torres threw a burning “incendiary device fashioned out of a bottle filled with flammable liquid among a large group of people standing near the delicatessen in the rear of the store.”

Only one person was injured, and he was treated for minor burns at the scene, police said. A Crystal Lake man who was shopping followed Torres out of the store and, with the help of an off-duty Carpentersville police officer who happened to be in the parking lot, subdued the Sleepy Hollow man until police arrived, Kuzynowski said.

Torres was charged with aggravated arson and was taken to the McHenry County Jail after his bond was set Monday morning. Kuzynowski declined to say what may have motivated the attack.

Published reports say Torres is a former Caputo’s employee and that he told one witness he is a Native American who is upset about how the American land has been exploited. The store sustained some damage, but reopened for business Monday.

more from the Sun-Times


"Community mediators" snuff out incidents of smoldering unrest

Watching the events in London unfold over the past week hit home for me. I was reminded of one of the young men from a British-based version of CeaseFire, the US public health programme, who had come here last October to train with us. Sitting with several of our members on a porch in Auburn Gresham, a disadvantaged Chicago neighbourhood, he enthusiastically threw his arms up and declared: "This is Brixton! I am home!"

"This is Brixton," carries a very different meaning today: burning cars, smouldering buildings and damaged store fronts.

more from The Guardian


Conservative rag fears flash mobs will ignite new Chicago "fire"

[June 13]

Stories about violent "flash mobs" roaming Chicago's North Side neighborhoods have been in the news the past 2 weeks. People are worried about the impact these mobs will have on tourism and the city's economy. Some are asking why this social unrest is happening, now, so soon after Mayor Daley left office.

Kevin O'Neil writes in the CTA Tattler, "Chicago police and Streeterville universities are warning residents and passersby to be aware of traveling mobs of teenagers who use the CTA and cell phones to meet up in the Near North Side area and commit crimes..."

O'Neil continues, "Police arrested seven young men in their mid-to-late teen Saturday night on "mob action" charges after about two dozen men attacked a person parking his scooter in the 300 block of E. Chicago Avenue...according to a Tribune news report."

Other flash mob incidents this year include: "A group of 70 youths storming a McDonald's at Chicago and State and creating a disturbance that forced the restaurant to close for three hours."

There were also "'Flash mob offenders' exiting the Chicago/State Red Line station and shoplifting at area stores. This behavior prompted Loyola University to warn students and staff at its Water Tower campus."

more from the American Thinker

Chicago police brace for flash mob attacks

[June 9]

Police here are girding for another weekend of "flash mob" attacks after arresting 29 people in connection with a recent rash of assaults and robberies in and around the city's tony shopping and dining district.

Twelve crimes involving large groups of young men were reported last weekend, in addition to others earlier this spring. The incidents are some of the first major problems confronting newly appointed Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy.

The attacks have received wide attention in Chicago because they have occurred around the city's affluent north side, including near the "Magnificent Mile," a Michigan Avenue strip popular with tourists.

The latest attack occurred early Thursday morning. A spokesman for the Chicago Police Department said the attack involved "multiple" perpetrators near an elevated train platform. Described in the police report as a "strong arm robbery," the group of assailants took the victim's iPad and money and punched him in the face. No arrests have yet been made in that case.

more from the WSJ

Group ditches government hearing to block traffic

It was billed as the community’s best chance to vent about a controversial federal program targeting illegal immigrants.

About 200 protesters instead decided they had had enough of talking — and marched out of a downtown task-force hearing Wednesday evening on the Secure Communities program, before blocking an intersection and the Kennedy Expy off-ramp at West Washington Street.

Ten people were arrested, police said, including one young male protester who ran down the off-ramp and starting waving off approaching traffic.

Chanting “Terminate the program! No more lies,” the protesters hoisted signs that read: “Police should protect and serve, not deport and terrify,” and “The Secure Communities Act is domestic terrorism.”

The hearing at the IBEW Hall, 600 W. Washington, was supposed to be an opportunity for the public to comment about the Secure Communities program, which automatically shares arrestees’ fingerprints and details with Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Those opposed to the program — touted as a way to protect citizens from dangerous convicts who are illegal immigrants — say it also ensnares people who have committed minor offenses and is a waste of police resources.

An advisory task force has held meetings in Los Angeles and Dallas — and now Chicago — to gather input and make a recommendation to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security about the program. Just 26 of Illinois’ 102 counties participate in the program. But Homeland Security recently told Gov. Pat Quinn and the governors of two other states that they can no longer opt out.

About 500 people — twice the number at either of the two previous hearings — packed the IBEW Hall. Most said the program deprives immigrants of their most basic rights.

“It is outrageous to incarcerate our neighbors — to pull them out of churches,” said protester Jim Cusack, 75, speaking before the task force.

But about 20 minutes into the hearing, almost half of the protesters marched out, led by a group that calls itself “Immigrant Youth Justice League.”

The protesters marched to Washington and Des Plaines, where they linked hands and sat down. By about 7:30 p.m, most had dispersed.

Several protesters admitted being illegal immigrants.

“This is something we face every day — being in deportation hearings. So putting ourselves in front of a street isn’t that far off from the fear the government makes us feel every day,” said protester Tania Unzueta, 27, who came to the U.S. from Mexico when she was 10.

from the Trib


Slain cop mistakenly listed on report of low-performing officers

Michael Bailey was one of the names on a list of low-performing Chicago Police officers sent to supervisors earlier this month.

Their work activity was “lower than other officers performing the same assignment” from Jan. 1 through June 6, the memo said.

The problem: Bailey was shot to death outside his house in July 2010 during an apparent robbery attempt after completing work on a security detail for then-Mayor Richard M. Daley.

more from the Sun-Times

Pro golfers clubs stolen at charity event

Pro golfer Ricky Barnes, in the Chicago area for a charity tournament, had his golf bag, clubs and an $8,000 watch swiped from his rental car this week, authorities said.

On Monday, Barnes was the guest of honor at the Middle Market Open National Kidney Foundation golf tournament at Olympia Fields Country Club.

Barnes, who’s ranked 93rd in the world, put his golf bag in the trunk of his car and locked it around 4 p.m. When he returned about 25 minutes later and opened the trunk, his wallet, bag, clubs and watch were gone.

The 14 clubs are valued at $3,500. His chrome Breitling Bentley watch was worth about $8,000.

more from the Sun-Times

Social War Milwaukee

A "total destroy!" to the anonymous comrades who started Social War Milwaukee.

For SWC's rather small Mke archive, check out the milwaukee tag.


Wage-slashing funeral home targeted by vandalism

On July 10, three Chicago-area Alderwoods funeral homes were viciously vandalized. All were Dignity Memorial network facilities that had also been targeted for a strike by local Teamsters.

Teamsters Local 727, which represents 16 Alderwoods embalmers, drivers and funeral directors, had been negotiating with the company that owns the homes after their labor contract expired June 30. The union complained that the other side had bargained in bad faith and had "…proposed a three-year wage freeze and a company health care package that is more expensive and less comprehensive than the union's health and welfare benefits," reports the Chicago Sun-Times. And so the Teamsters targeted four funeral homes for strike.

more at the Baltimore Sun