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Weis Called Before City Council

By Marcus Gilmer in News on Jul 10, 2008 3:45PM

2008_07_10_jodyweis.jpgIn the wake of the recent uptick in violence, including last week's Taste of Chicago shootings, Chicago Police Supt. Jody Weis is being called to face the music by Alderman (29th) and Police Committee Chairman Isaac Carothers.

"He's inexperienced, and it's his first Taste," Carothers said. "I want to see what his response is going to be to deal with this violence, not only at the Taste, but with this unprecedented violence in this city—13 percent up murders, shootings are up, violence is up, every category is up—and he has to respond to that."
Many complaints about Weis have centered around the fact that his focus has been on cleaning up corruption within the force rather than on fighting crime and ignoring manpower shortages. He replaced nearly his entire district command staff (21 of 25) and upset many veteran officers and their political allies in the process. And last week's killing of a police officer surely doesn't help matters.

In spite of this wave of criticism, Mayor Daley has defended the police response at the Taste and continues to defend Weis: "If the shooting [at the Taste] didn’t take place, you wouldn’t be writing about it...It’s amazing. No one ever asked Phil Cline that. No one likes a new boss. No one likes new procedures...He’s a very good superintendent." It remains to be seen if Weis can strike a balance between cleaning up the Chicago Police Dept and fighting the increasing violence in the city, or if he can even effectively handle either of the problems separately. What's clear, however, is that the rookie Police Superintendent finds himself on a suddenly short leash. [Trib, S-T, CBS2]