Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. It’s about a 5-minute read that will brief you on today’s biggest stories.
Chicago’s most important news of the day, delivered every weekday afternoon. Plus, a bonus issue on Saturdays that dives into the city’s storied history.
Expect some severe weather this afternoon following a sunny morning: scattered thunderstorms, torrential downpours and wind gusts of up to 45 mph are all in the forecast. The high will be near 88 degrees and the low will be around 73 degrees. Tomorrow, more rain and thunderstorms are possible before things clear up; the high will be around 80 degrees.
A Chicago Police officer seen last week flipping off protesters in Lincoln Park has been stripped of his police powers and moved to administrative duty, the department confirmed today.
“The officer used a vulgar, offensive gesture directed at a member of the public while on duty and in uniform,” Kellie Bartoli, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Police Department, said in a statement. “The member will be limited to administrative duties at the direction of the superintendent.” No other information was available, Bartoli said.
The officer came under fire after Block Club Chicago photographer Colin Boyle shared a photo and video on Twitter of the officer extending both middle fingers at peaceful protesters last week. Supt. David Brown’s decision to relieve the officer of his duties comes after Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s call to have the officer fired last week.
“I’ve seen the photograph of the officer, in uniform, giving people the finger. We’ll find that person. And, in my view, that person needs to immediately be stripped of their police powers and start the process for firing him,” Lightfoot said Friday. “We will not tolerate that kind of abusive, offensive conduct on the part of police officers. Period.”
Last week, John Catanzara, president of the Chicago Police Union, rejected the idea that what the officer did was a fireable offense: “Is it professional behavior? No. Is it childish? Maybe a little bit,” Catanzara said. “Again, it’s not fireable; she knows that. It’s just rhetoric she is throwing out there because she knows she screwed up last weekend with the response of this whole riot, and it falls on her doorstep.”
Ultimately, the nine-member Chicago Police Board will decide how the officer is disciplined, but the city’s Civilian Office of Police Accountability must first complete an investigation.
A spokesperson from Civilian Office of Police Accountability could not be reached for comment.
More news you need
- A group of about 50 students, parents and politicians rallied outside Chicago Public Schools headquarters today, demanding all police officers be removed from schools, with the savings going to pay for mental health support for students. Mayor Lori Lightfoot said last week she understands the concerns, but she doesn’t favor removing officers from schools.
- All outdoor permitted special events slated through Labor Day have been canceled — including Lollapalooza, the Chicago Air & Water Show, Taste of Chicago and the Chicago Jazz Festival. To fill the void, the city has announced a lineup of over 150 reimagined events, including at-home dance parties, drive-in movies and virtual concerts.
- Clara Kirk, a recipient of numerous national and local public service awards for the homeless shelters and services she operated in Englewood for more than 30 years, including Clara’s House and Clara’s Place, died today at age 79. Read Maudlyne Ihejirika’s obituary for the “Mother of Englewood.”
- Movie fans who want to return to watching their favorite films on the big screen can head out to the ChiTown Movies drive-in in Pilsen starting tonight. “Star Wars: A New Hope” will be screened at 8:50 p.m. & 11:50 p.m. tonight through June 15.
A bright one
The Wiener’s Circle, the Chicago hot dog stand famous for its employees, who hurl insults at customers for fun, is continuing its tradition of doing exactly that — even amid the coronavirus pandemic.
The iconic Lincoln Park spot is now inviting customers to order via FaceTime, so diners can get “charred from a safe distance.” That’s in addition to “curbside abuse,” which launched in the spring, when the shutdown first went into effect. The announcement came in the form of a video posted yesterday. (Warning: contains explicit language, naturally):
At the start of the pandemic, all sales were helping the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund. Now, all sales also will support the Chicago Black-Owned Restaurant Relief Fund started by Black People Eats.
To order a hot dog and fries “with a side of abuse,” customers can FaceTime 773-BITCHES. (Yes, they really nabbed that phone number.) You can also order on Tock, Grubhub and UberEats.
From the press box
The Bears plan to end their offseason program more than a week early so players can focus more on training instead of Zoom meetings, coach Matt Nagy said today.
Beat reporter Jason Lieser looked at five Bears players under the most pressure heading into next season, led by Khalil Mack and his $26.6 million cap hit.
Your daily question ☕
Father’s Day is less than two weeks away (you’re welcome), so we want to know: What are your best gift ideas this year?
Email us (please include your name and where you live) and we might include your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.
Yesterday, we asked you to tell us which of Chicago’s parks and library branches are your favorite, in light of most of them reopening. Here’s what some of you said…
“My favorite area is Grant Park. I enjoy walking by CloudGate (AKA The Bean), going to Buckingham Fountain and standing in the mist on a hot day, strolling through Lurie Garden and walking through the Rose Gardens.” — Terry Mankus
“Bezazian Library branch is great! Love the folks there and the book shelves have the coolest things, like a little ornament of a Le Chat Noir poster.” — Connor Elizabeth
“Palmisano Nature Park in Bridgeport.” — Jenna Smietanski
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