Neighborhood residents defend Chicago cops shown on video

March 31, 2011

Download Story
(AP/file)
Eric Hudson knows the officers through the city’s community-policing program.

Two Chicago cops shown on video with a young man in the backseat of their SUV are getting support from some Northwest Side residents.

In the video, recorded March 19 in Humboldt Park, the officers appear to be standing by as onlookers flash gang symbols and taunt the young man. After WBEZ spotted the video, the police department put the officers on desk duty and began an internal investigation. On Friday, interim police Supt. Terry Hillard called the incident “not professional.”

The neighborhood residents say they’re drafting a petition to Hillard that praises the officers. They’re also organizing calls and messages to Ald. Roberto Maldonado (26th Ward) and Linda Flores, commander of the police department’s Shakespeare District.

“I would never do this for any cops but these two,” said Eric Hudson, who knows the officers through CAPS, the city’s community-policing program. “These aren’t John Wayne Robocops out here. Their actions empower us to become more vocal and take back our corners.”

Witnesses say the incident lasted about five minutes before the officers drove the young man away.

Hear our interview with Eric Hudson at Police video: Cops’ supporter speaks out.