Near North Side residents sound off after recent violence, ‘illegal’ beach party

CHICAGO — Residents who live on the Near North Side sounded off in a public safety meeting Monday following recent violence and a “illegal party” at North Avenue Beach.

The 18th District police commander had to show up to the meeting about an hour late because he had to respond to a shooting at the Allerton Hotel.

“We want to know what’s happening when we had a situation with 300 people at North Avenue, at LaSalle,” a resident said. “That’s why I’m here.”

Several hundred people, mostly teens, gathered at North Avenue Beach for an “illegal party” Wednesday evening. Afterwards, it spilled over into the streets in Gold Coast and Old Town.

People were seen climbing CTA buses and surrounding cars at a gas station.

Ald. Brian Hopkins and area residents criticized the Chicago Police Department’s handling of the crowd.

“It was not an effective response,” Ald. Hopkins said. “I do believe mistakes were made both at North Avenue Beach and Bean at Millennium Park.”

CPD attempted to create perimeters and close off access to the beach. One arrest was made.

File source

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