Sunday, August 10, 2008

7200 N. Damen Near Daily Drinking Fiesta

Has anyone seen 7227 North crowded with underaged drinkers? It seems like the grand daddy neighbor at 7223 N. Damen kicked off the public binge. This may be old news, since I have seen less action in recent days.

The old man drinks from his paper bag. This seasoned senior citizen sets a bold example for neighboring teens. There seems to be a twenty-something resident who hosts a perpetual drinking party. He looks like a Hispanic guy around 5' 5" to 5' 10" from a distance. I was in the area on the morning of August 10, 2008 in front of 7227 N. Damen hanging out with a neighbor. For those who drive, walk, or ride the bus by, 7227 N. Damen often had a crowd on the east side of the street just south of N. Rogers.

The groups tend to get obnoxious with loud and abusive language which intimidates and offends some neighbors. At least three other neighbors observed the group on this recent borachero.

On the tenth, when the four revelers left, they carried their Modelo beer cans with them. Sometimes, they drop the empties. Today, they were drunk enough to urinate on their SUV's bumper in public or pretend to. I didn't bother to check, but the act looked convincing. Another teen looked out his second floor window with disgust within 10 feet of the Black Chevy Blazer with Illinois license plate 848 1188.

If Chicago will not enforce its litter laws or open alcohol ordinances and State Statutes in some meaningful way, even inconsistently, then we will continue to experience regular and routine violations in our neighborhood.

Non-enforcement encourages contempt for police, where police don’t first warn and then come back to see if these whether the drinkers think Police are actually serious. Most ignore the warnings. If they see that they can get away with open and obvious beer drinking and public pissing, then what's next? Will it turn to drug sales, where it has not, already. My belief is that one from the party at 7227 N. Damen networked and picked up a drug seller who periodically vends in front of Summit Grocery.

The challenge of reasonable enforcement is not that extreme. A little enforcement can encourage compliance; the drinking party will move indoors or into the backyard, where it belongs. To drink in front on a public sidewalk is an advertisement. It encourages party crashers or those who might be acquainted with a few, but have no business being at 7227 N. Damen.

Again, I am not against a good party, but the uninvited may get frustrated. Some recruit for gangs with open drinking. Why does CPD encourage delinquency, open alcohol uses, and public urination with its 'mop up and pick up the pieces 20 minutes later tactical unit?' Is it understaffing or the desire to avoid confrontation? Is it really the best practice to let the situation fizzle out?

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