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Statement Issued Ahead of Planned Racial Profiling Protest on 95th Street

Evergreen Park Police have alerted residents about a protest against racial profiling that is planned to take place Saturday afternoon on 95th Street.

Evergreen Park Police Chief Michael Saunders has issued a statement on the planned protest scheduled for Saturday, May 18 at 1 p.m. The protest is expected to start at 1 p.m. and organizers say they will march down 95th Street from Western Avenue to Cicero Avenue to protest what they see as discriminatory racial practices of the Evergreen Park and Oak Lawn police departments. 

Read More:

  • Protest Planned on 95th Street Over Police Racial Profiling Allegations
  • Legal Woes Surround 'Racial Profiling' Protest Organizer

In a video posted on the Evergreen Park village website, Saunders hits back at claims of racial bias and alerts residents to tomorrow's planned activities. 

You can find a PDF of the statistics he references to the right of this article. 

Full statement by Chief Saunders:

ON MAY 9TH, I WAS GIVEN NOTIFICATION IN WRITING OF A PLANNED PROTEST CONCERNING ALLEGATIONS OF RACIAL PROFILING THAT WILL OCCUR IN THE VILLAGES OF EVERGREEN PARK AND OAK LAWN, ILLINOIS TO PROTEST THEIR RESPECTIVE POLICE AGENCIES.

THE PROTESTERS WILL STAGE AT 95TH AND WESTERN AVENUE AT 1:00 PM ON SATURDAY, AND PROCEED FROM THAT LOCATION TO CICERO AVENUE AND BACK.

ADEQUATE POLICE PRESENCE WILL BE IN PLACE TO INSURE THE SAFETY OF OUR RESIDENTS, BUSINESSES, THE GENERAL PUBLIC AND THE PROTESTERS SO THAT THEY ARE ALLOWED TO PEACEFULLY EXERCISE THEIR CONSTITUTIONAL RIGHT TO DO SO.

I BELIEVE THAT THIS ORGANIZED PROTEST HAS BEEN FUELED BY FALSE FACTS AND UN-FAIR MEDIA COVERAGE CONDUCTED BY FOX NEWS AND THE BETTER GOVERNMENT ASSOCIATION, EARLIER THIS YEAR. OTHER FACTORS NOT ASSOCIATED WITH RACIAL PROFILING ALLEGATIONS AGAINST THESE COMMUNITIES PREVAIL IN THIS PROTEST THAT CONCERN LEGITIMATE LAW ENFORCEMENT PRACTICES THAT KEEP OUR COMMUNITY SAFE FOR ALL.     

LET US FIRST DEFINE WHAT RACIAL PROFILING IS, AS TAKEN DIRECTLY FROM THE WEBSTER’S DICTIONARY DEFINITION;

THE ACT OF SUSPECTING OR TARGETING A PERSON ON THE BASIS OF OBSERVED CHARACTERISTICS OR BEHAVIOR.

OR;

THE ACT OR PRACTICE OF REGARDING PARTICULAR PEOPLE AS MORE LIKELY TO COMMIT CRIMES BECAUSE OF THEIR APPEARANCE, RACE, ETC. 

IN FACT, THOSE NEWS AGENCIES WERE ADVISED THAT THEY WOULD BE GRANTED ACCESS TO RIDE IN POLICE UNITS AND ACTUALLY OBSERVE THE OFFICERS IN THE PERFORMANCE OF THEIR DUTIES, INCLUDING TRAFFIC ENFORCEMENT.

I WILL DIRECT YOU TO ACTUAL STATISTICS THAT ARE VERIFIABLE, BUT FIRST I HAVE TO EXPLAIN TO YOU THAT THIS TYPE OF INFORMATION WAS TOTALLY DISREGARDED IN THEIR REPORTS.

I REFUSED ON CAMERA INTERVIEWS WITH THE NEWS AGENCIES DESCRIBED AS I DID NOT BELIEVE MY COMPLETE MESSAGE TO YOU WOULD BE ACCURATELY CONVEYED IN FULL DETAIL.

THE NEWS REPORTS GAVE STATISTICS ON OUR TRAFFIC STOPS CONCERNING MINORITY AND OTHER DRIVERS,

BUT THEY DISREGARDED AND FAILED TO REPORT ON THE ACTUAL STATISTICAL ANALYSES REVIEW STATED UNDER THE 2004 REPORT ON THE ILLINOIS TRAFFIC STOP STATISTICS ACT FOR THE YEAR 2004.

THIS REPORT WAS CONDUCTED BY NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY CENTER FOR PUBLIC SAFETY THAT REPORTED ITS FINDINGS TO THE ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION ON JULY 1ST 2005. 

THIS WAS A PUBLISHED DOCUMENT.

I WILL ATTACH PAGES 60 THROUGH 62 OF THAT DOCUMENT THAT HIGHLIGHT THAT REPORT IN REFERENCE TO THE VILLAGE OF EVERGREEN PARK ON THIS WEBSITE FOR YOUR REVIEW.

ON PAGE 60, IN THE FINAL PARAGRAPH, IT STATES; FINALLY THERE WAS ONE UNIQUE AGENCY, CLASSIFIED AS “CLASS 4”. EVERGREEN PARK IS SITUATED ALMOST ENTIRELY WITHIN CHICAGO AND SHARES A VERY TINY BORDER WITH OAK LAWN TO THE EAST. (It should actually say to the West.) BUT FOR THIS LINK TO OAK LAWN, EVERGREEN PARK WOULD ESSENTIALLY BE AN INDEPENDENT ISLAND WITHIN CHICAGO. IT, THEREFORE, WAS APPROPRIATE TO GIVE EVERGREEN PARK THE CHICAGO BENCHMARK. WE NOTE, ALSO, THAT THIS MIGHT ACTUALLY BE AN UNDERESTIMATE OF THE NUMBER OF MINORITIES USING EVERGREEN PARK ROADS SINCE THE PART OF CHICAGO THAT SURROUNDS THE SMALL CITY IS ALSO HEAVILY MINORITY.

THIS IS A CRITICAL COMPONENT OF THIS ANALYSES, AND WAS COMPLETELY ABSENT FROM THOSE NEWS REPORTS MENTIONED AND THAT WOULD HAVE AVOIDED ANY CONFUSION WITH OUR THEN PUBLISHED STATISTICS.

BY ELIMINATING THAT INFORMATION, IT WAS EASY TO REPORT THAT EVERGREEN PARK POLICE WERE IN DISCREPANCY IN THE ALLOTTED STATISTICS GIVEN.  

I HAVE TWICE, SINCE 2005, REQUESTED FOR OUR STATISTICAL INFORMATION TO BE REVIEWED AND UPDATED. I HAVE BEEN INFORMED THAT THE NEXT PERIOD OF REVIEW AND CHANGE WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED UNTIL MARCH OF 2014. 

PLEASE REVIEW THE INFORMATION ON THIS WEBSITE THAT MY AGENCY HAS COMPILED TO REFUTE THE CURRENT RACIAL PROFILING STATISTICS ALLOTTED TO THIS AGENCY SINCE 2005. IT SHOULD ALSO BE SAID THAT SINCE THAT REPORT WAS PUBLISHED, THE MINORITY NUMBERS OF RESIDENTS IN EVERGREEN PARK HAS GREATLY INCREASED SINCE THE ORIGINAL DATA WAS COLLECTED. 

FOX NEWS AND THE BETTER GOVERNMENT ASSOCIATION MADE A POINT OF SAYING THAT THE SAME AMOUNT OF WHITE DRIVERS HAS NOT CHANGED SINCE THE REPORT WAS MADE. I DEFY THERE LOGIC IN THIS, WHAT THAT MEANS IS THAT WITH THE TOTAL GIVEN INCREASE OF MINORITY DRIVERS, THAT THE NUMBER OF WHITE DRIVERS STOPPED HAS ACTUALLY INCREASED AS THEIR NUMBERS IN TRAFFIC HAVE ACTUALLY DECLINED. 

IN CONCLUSION, I CAN ASSURE EVERYONE THAT THE VILLAGE OF EVERGREEN PARK POLICE DEPARTMENT DOES NOT PRACTICE OR HAS EVER PARTICIPATED IN ANY TYPE OF RACIAL PROFILING. 

WE HAVE STRICT RULES, REGULATIONS AND POLICIES THAT ARE ENFORCED THAT PROHIBIT THESE TYPES OF LAW ENFORCEMENT PRACTICES IN OUR COMMUNITY.

WE ALSO DEPLOY STATE OF THE ART DIGITALLY RECORDED CAMERAS IN EVERY SQUAD CAR THAT COMPREHENSIVELY RECORDS VISUAL AND AUDIBLE EVIDENCE OF EACH STOP WE MAKE. 

THANK YOU, AND AS ALWAYS, WE RESPECT ANY INDIVIDUAL OR GROUP’S RIGHT TO PROTEST PEACEFULLY, FOR ANY PURPOSE, UNDER THE PREMISE OF OUR GREAT COUNTRY’S CONSTITUTION THAT PROTECTS US ALL.

 THANK YOU

kathy May 22, 2013 at 12:59 AM
True, but it pisses me off they come here to cause problems. Used to love this town when I moved here 20yrs ago, now I'm scared to even leave my door open on these nice days..sad...
Walt Schilling May 22, 2013 at 01:07 AM
I agree. I put a dollar store alarm on my screen door so I can tell if someone opens it. I'm A 4th generation Ep resident, And I dont like how things are going. I dont mind the new neighbors, Most of them are great people. Some of the kids? Not so much. I miss the days when your Ma knew when you messed up before you even got home, And the neighborhood Moms had the right to slap the taste out of someone else's kids mouth. There was no better attitude adjustment then getting smacked by your friends Mom and then going home to find out you Mom already knew what you did and you got smacked again. Then have your grandma find out what you did Sunday when she went to church.
Ginger May 22, 2013 at 01:10 AM
Police is our first line of defense when it comes to visitors thinking they can come into family oriented areas and cause social illnesses. Be tough on drivers, go over 2 miles--ticket! Know when you come into our strong work ethic neighborhoods, we take our stop signs seriously. This IS how serious we are about established laws Unlike CPD. It has to do with the maintenance of an Orderly Community. God bless our EPD & OLDP!
kathy May 22, 2013 at 01:11 AM
So true Walt...my house was robbed two summers ago...while we were in the back doing yard work. I'm surecupit was the kid to doors down, but couldn't prove it. I'd like to smack him, since no one at his house seems to care what he does...noe I lock the door when I walk out of the room...miss the fresh air! Alarms, more lights...I feel trapped in my own house andi don't like it
kathy May 22, 2013 at 01:13 AM
Well said Ginger!

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