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.
This afternoon will be cloudy with a high near 31 degrees. Tonight will be breezy with some rain and snow and a low around 28 degrees. Tomorrow will be mostly cloudy with a high near 43 degrees and a chance of rain and snow.
‘I’m very perplexed’: Jurors hear call from Ald. Patrick Daley Thompson disputing how much he owed bank
When Ald. Patrick Daley Thompson got a statement in the mail in 2018 that said he owed $269,000 to the shuttered Washington Federal Bank for Savings, he dialed up a customer-service line.
He answered all the classic security questions. Then he insisted he had only borrowed $100,000 from the bank and called the situation “completely bizarre.”
“I’m very perplexed,” Thompson said. “This is a significantly higher and much more than — remotely of what we were talking about.”
He added, “And I dispute that.”
Those comments by Thompson in a Feb. 23, 2018, call to Planet Home Lending are the basis for the first count in his April 2021 indictment — alleging he lied about how much he owed Washington Federal — and jurors heard a recording of it today as Thompson’s federal tax trial continued at the Dirksen Federal Courthouse.
The evidence came in as the trial appears to be nearing its end. Lawyers in the case have predicted they will give closing arguments Monday. Prosecutors said they have just a few witnesses left to call, including former Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. contractors Daniel Newell and John Holly.
Thompson spoke to them on March 1, 2018, records show. During that conversation, Thompson allegedly said he had only borrowed $110,000 from Washington Federal for home improvement. That’s the basis for the second charge alleging Thompson lied about what he owed.
Thompson is also charged with filing false federal income tax returns for the years 2013 through 2017. His attorney insists Thompson didn’t notice improper deductions on his tax returns, and that he forgot how much money he owed when he spoke to regulators.
Jon Seidel and Tim Novak have the latest from the trial here.
More news you need
- Chicago Public Schools is sticking with a pre-Labor Day start to the 2022-23 school year, even offering families a chance to vote on whether to resume classes two weeks before the holiday next fall. That would be the district’s earliest start in recent memory.
- When a college student removed a photo from a memorial to a murdered Chicago Police Officer on the day of the officer’s funeral and threw it in the trash, she did so to intentionally cause hurt, prosecutors alleged today. The 26-year-old, who is being held on a $15,000 bond, faces a felony criminal defacement of property charge.
- Nancy Rish — doing a life sentence in prison for being an accomplice in the killing of Stephen Small, a Kankakee businessman buried alive in 1987 — walked out of prison today. Rish, 60, won a reduction of her life sentence earlier this month and was paroled today.
- Charges have been filed against two people who were inside a West Ridge social club when it was raided by city, state and federal officials earlier this week, but the scope of the investigation remained unclear. Sources told the Sun-Times that a search warrant was served at the building as part of an investigation into fraud, illegal gambling and drug sales.
- The Wiener’s Circle has shared video of a man who threw a brick through the window of the Lincoln Park restaurant last night after he was denied service for refusing to wear a mask. Police said this morning that no one is in custody, while the restaurant took to Twitter to offer Bulls tickets and a party to anyone who could track down the man.
- Rabbi Douglas Goldhamer, who founded a synagogue in Skokie for deaf people and a Hebrew seminary to train rabbis to communicate with them, has died of heart failure at 76 years old. Among his students at Congregation Bene Shalom, the Reform Jewish synagogue he established half a century ago, he helped Oscar winner Marlee Matlin study for her bat mitzvah.
- In “jeen-yuhs: A Kanye Trilogy,” a new three-part documentary some 20 years in the making, we see a young, scrappy Ye during his early days in Chicago. It’s a handheld portrait of a young artist refusing to give up his dreams, accept a certain level of success or be labeled by, well, his label, writes our Richard Roeper in his three-star review.
A bright one
Eddie Vedder delivers old-time alt-rock with newfound fervor and Earthlings
In the 30-plus years that Eddie Vedder has been a part of the rock music pantheon, he’s played a full cast of characters on stage. There’s been the unhinged banshee that made early Lollapalooza appearances look like stunt double tryouts; the eager Cubs fan who got to live out his field of dreams headlining Wrigley Field; and the emotional wild card that flipped the script on “MTV Unplugged.”
Yet, last night at the Auditorium Theatre — the first of two nights in a short run of solo shows — Vedder was simply a singer-songwriter in his element, writes Selena Fragassi in her review of the evening.
The rare appearance sans the members of Pearl Jam served as a sounding board for Vedder’s latest solo material before his new record “Earthling” hits streets tomorrow.
Though the wide-spanning performance on this night was bookended by a curated assortment of covers, Vedder devoted the meaty midsection to previewing nine of the 13 new tracks that show his ever-growing range.
For now, the brief tour jaunt only includes six cities. The idea, Vedder said, came out of working in the studio with his supergroup backing band The Earthlings, who made their debut at his Ohana Festival last September and have been a huge asset on the new material.
The troupe is comprised of Red Hot Chili Peppers drummer Chad Smith as well as former RHCP guitarist Josh Klinghoffer, Jane’s Addiction bassist Chris Chaney, The Frames/Swell Season talent Glen Hansard on guitar and vocals, as well as newcomer guitarist Andrew Watt who, up until now, has been a well-known producer for Top 40 pop stars but will soon earn a reputation as a bonafide shredder.
Fragassi has more from her night at the show here.
From the press box
- The NBA trade deadline came and went this afternoon without any action from the Bulls, who seemingly decided to stand pat and bank on their chemistry in favor of taking a big swing to add more talent.
- The 2022 class to the Pro Football Hall of Fame will be announced tonight as part of the NFL Honors show. Devin Hester hopes he’ll have his place in history cemented as a first-ballot selection, Jason Lieser writes.
- Bears coach Matt Eberflus appeared to round out his staff yesterday by adding running backs coach David Walker and two more low-level assistants.
Your daily question ☕
Who had the best Super Bowl halftime show of all time? Tell us why.
Email us (please include your first name and where you live) and we might include your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.
Yesterday we asked you: It’s National Pizza Day so we want to know — who has the best pizza? Chicago or New York?
Here’s what some of you said…
“New York pizza is way too thin and lacks the right amount of ingredients. Chicago pizza thin crust is way crispier with more ingredients and deep dish is a wonderful bonus — but way more calories, so we don’t have it as often but it’s fantastic.” — Louise Basetich Stempora
“New York is the home for pizza in the U.S. and by far is the most authentic outside of Napoli.” — Ralph Tambasco
“I don’t even understand NY pizza. Nothing makes me happier than being in my hometown and eating Salerno’s sausage pizza cut in squares.” — Christine Marasco
“I have had both and I prefer Chicago’s pizza. And it also needs to be stated that Chicagoans don’t all eat deep dish. We prefer thin sliced!” — Steve Kelly
“This is like asking whether the lion — Chicago — or the mouse — the other city — is more fearsome. Chicago rules pizza because of its innovation, love for and heritage in the food.” — Craig Barner
“NY pizza is greasy as hell. Chicago hands down.” — Larry Evans
“Chicago! Delicious sausage. Thin crust. Mushrooms. Peppers. Just the right amount of sauce and cheese. It’s perfect!” — Jackie Flinchum
“Chicago, of course. Pizza isn’t meant to be folded.” — Pamala Evans
“Can we just accept that different cities have different types of pizza that different people like for different reasons? Except for Detroit-style pizza — that’s just wrong.” — Cheryl Wisniewski
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