While the shockingly large scale of death and violence in Chicago has now become so mainstream as not to warrant daily attention by the media, the news that Mayor Rahm Emanuel's son Zach was robbed of his cellphone and assaulted around 10:05pm Friday night near the family's affluent neighborhood home is likely to raise public awareness of just how bad things are getting in 'Chiraq'. As The Chicago tribue reports, two males approached Zach from behind; one of them "placed his arm around the victim's neck in a rear chokehold," and the second one struck the teen with a fist, knocking him to the ground. The robbers took the teen’s cellphone and patted him down, the police report said. The mayor has an around-the-clock police detail – fully 5% of the 19th district's police manpower, but its whereabouts at the time of the robbery weren't disclosed.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s 17-year-old son was robbed near the family's Ravenswood home Friday night, according to a mayoral spokeswoman and police reports.
Zach Emanuel was robbed of his cellphone and assaulted Friday night but was able to join his family on a long-planned trip Saturday, according to a statement released by Emanuel spokeswoman Kelley Quinn.
"The Mayor's focus is on his son's well-being, and as parents, he and Amy ask that the media respect their family's privacy at this time," Quinn said in the statement, referring to Emanuel's wife, Amy Rule.
Zach Emanuel was talking on his cellphone in the 4200 block of North Hermitage Avenue, across the street and a few houses down from the Emanuel home, when two males approached him from behind, according to the police report.
One of them "placed his arm around the victim's neck in a rear chokehold," and the second one struck the teen with a fist, knocking him to the ground. The robbers took the teen’s cellphone and patted him down, the police report said.
"The offenders then asked the victim, 'What else you got?' (and) forced the victim to enter his security code to unlock the phone," the police report said.
The robbers then ran away. The teen was treated for cuts and bruises on his face by a personal physician at his home, according to the report.
Chicago police confirmed Saturday that a robbery occurred about 10:05 p.m. Friday near the mayor's home. Officer Thomas Sweeney, a police spokesman, reported that "a juvenile male was walking on the 4200 block of North Hermitage Avenue when he was approached by two unknown male offenders who grabbed him and went through his pockets, taking his phone."
This year in Chicago…
Of course, as CWB Chicago reports, the attack on the mayor's son got some special attention:
CWB editors have heard Chicago police handle hundreds of strong-arm robberies in the 19th district over the past 18 months—including 2 others on the mayor's block. None drew the "special attention" of last night's incident.
While most strong-arm robbery victims are lucky to get the services of more than a couple of police units, last night's victim seemed to receive luxurious VIP treatment.
Most robbery cases go from 911 call to paperwork stage in less than 30 minutes—but last night's incident had a remarkable shelf life of over two hours. Among the unusual steps taken last night:
- 30 minutes after the incident, a 19th district lieutenant—a supervisory position that virtually never dabbles in routine crimes—pulled a patrol car off of its normal duties to assist with the robbery. (When the officers were perceived to have been slow in calling the station for their assignment, the lieutenant barked on the radio, "Have [them] call me NOW!")
- Nearly 50 minutes after the robbery, a sergeant sought information about the robbery's timing.
- The previously-mentioned lieutenant tried to contact the district commander to tell him about the very special robbery that had taken place.
- 80 minutes after the robbery, a sergeant asked to have the offender descriptions broadcast again.
And finally, we thought it intriguing that 24-hours-a-day, fully 5% of the 19th district's police manpower is committed to sitting outside of the mayor's house. Even when nobody's home.