To the Editor:
I recently sent this letter to Ald. Leslie Hairston (5th) and Ald. Sophia King (4th). I tried to send it to Ald. Jeanette Taylor (20th) also, but it was not successful.
Ms Hairston and Ms King—
What plans have been made to prevent the mobs of kids–destructive and violent–from terrorizing Hyde Park residents as they did last Halloween–in fact the last 5 Halloweens?
My son, a husband and father and Hyde Park resident since 1973, was beaten by a mob of at least 40 teenagers, using a pipe and their fists–and feet, once he was on the ground. He had interrupted them from breaking the car windows of every car parked on Kimbark along Nichols Park.
Since I am a nurse, I accompanied him to the U. of C. ER for stitches of his head wound and XRays to ensure he did not have a concussion or ruptured spleen. There we learned that he was one of several other patients who were being treated for injuries sustained similarly that evening.
I know there was a party organized to keep the merchants along 53rd Street safe from vandalism which had occurred several past Halloweens, but clearly that plan was not sufficient–nor were cops on bikes sufficient to stop the residential vandalism.
I actually wrote several months ago volunteering to be a community volunteer on a planning committee to prevent another BAD Halloween experience, but never heard back from your office.
I would suggest that Sophia King and Jeanette Taylor be included in such planning and I am sending this request to their offices as well. I am also contacting the Hyde Park Herald within the next week to appeal to the community.
Thanks for your time and attention to this important matter!
We must have community participation as well as University of Chicago and Chicago PD as part of a planning committee in response to Hyde Park’s Halloween experiences.