Alderman Lopez speaks discusses gang retaliation after bricks were thrown through windows at his Brighton Park home on Artesian Avenue (WGN News).
A Chicago alderman, who had a verbal encounter with Mayor Lori Lightfoot during a teleconference on May 31, 2020, is now facing vandal attacks at his own home by offenders he suspects are retaliating gang members.
An offender threw a bricks — one through the window of Ald. Ray Lopez’s (15th) home in the block of 4300 Artesian Avenue early Thursday July 9, 2020. Offenders returned an hour later and set a neighbor’s garage on fire. Lopez believes the offender thought he was setting the alderman’s garage on fire. The alderman’s husband extinguished the garage fire with a garden hose in the Brighton Park neighborhood, which is northwest of the Englewood neighborhood and west of the Back of the Yards neighborhood.
The incident occurred hours after a confrontation between the alderman and gang members who live in the 4300 block of South Fairfield Avenue — five blocks (12 side streets) west of Lopez’s house. The South Fairfield Avenue area is known to police and to neighbors for incidents involving gang activity. Lopez said he was aggressively going after landlords who turn a blind eye to the terror that their gang-banging tenants and drug-dealing tenants bring to their communities.
Gang members also arrived to intimidate Lopez, telling him that politicians don’t make peace in the neighborhood, and that it’s up to gang members to decide if there’s going to be peace in the neighborhood.
Profanity-laced call involving Chicago mayor leaked after Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Alderman Raymond Lopez clashed over rioting and looting in neighborhoods during a teleconference involving 50 alderman on May 31, 2020.
Ald. Lopez on May 31, 2020 accused Mayor Lori Lightfoot of being underprepared for civil unrest in outer neighborhoods compared to downtown Chicago.
“Half our neighborhoods are already obliterated. It’s too late. We have to come up with a better plan because once — my fear is — once they’re done, looting and rioting and whatever is going to happen tonight, God help us.
What happens when they start going after residents, going into the neighborhoods, once they start trying to break down people’s doors, who they think they got something? You know, we know that people are here to antagonize and incite and you’ve got him all pumped tonight — today, they’re not going to go to bed at 8:00. They’re going to turn their focus in their neighborhoods. I’ve got gang bangers with AK 47s walking around right now just waiting to settle some scores. What are we gonna do?”
— Ald. Raymond Lopez
In the alderman’s ward, two Walgreens, small business stores and restaurants, and an entire strip mall were burned down.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot refused to respond, but Lopez demanded a response. Then Mayor Lori Lightfoot replied.
“I think you’re 100 percent full of s***, is what I think. If you think … if you think we were not ready, and we stood by and let the neighborhoods go up, there’s nothing intelligent that I can say to you. That is the stupidest thing I have ever heard. I understand you want to preen,” Lightfoot replied.
Lopez replied, “Well no offend but f*** you, then. Who are you to tell me I’m full of s***?” Maybe you should come out and see what’s going on. Mayor, you need to check your f***ing attitude.”
Lopez said, “I heard on the (police) scanners that we have hundreds of people, caravans, driving in from Indiana and other places to come and terrorize our city.” Lightfoot replied, “That’s an unsubstantiated rumor. You can chase that if you want, Ray.”
On the day of the conference call, Chicago had 699 arrests (mostly looters), 132 police officers were injured, 48 shootings, and 17 homicides.
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