New day dawning? Chicago judge refuses bail for man with three pending carjackings now arrested on gun charge

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CHICAGO, IL – It must all be a joke to those who spend their days wreaking havoc on their communities and getting picked up by the police only to be set free again to carry on.

One young man well-known to officers with the Chicago Police Department is one Raekwon Wilson. He was arrested most recently this past Sunday, when he ran from police who saw him with a gun in his waistband, according to prosecutors.

The 19-year-old already has not one, not two but THREE pending carjacking cases in juvenile court, prosecutors said.

Not that it matters, but Wilson also has active arrest warrants in Wisconsin for cannabis and narcotics, according to court documents.

In a surprising move for a routine gun charge, prosecutors asked a judge to hold Wilson without bail. Even more surprising was that the judge granted the request.

A press release from CPD on Feb. 25, 2021, announced that officers arrested an unnamed 17-year-old male in connection with three vehicle hijackings. According to CWB Chicago, the dates of those crimes match details provided by a prosecutor during Wilson’s bail hearing Monday. The three cases in which Wilson is charged are:

  • Three male carjackers physically attacked and carjacked a 32-year-old man on South Sawyer Avenue at 9 p.m. on Sept. 1, 2020.
  • Two hijackers displayed a gun and took a Lyft driver’s car on South Christiana Avenue at 1:45 p.m. on Nov. 19, 2020.
  • Two men displayed a gun while robbing and carjacking an Uber driver who picked them up on South Spaulding Avenue at 9:43 p.m. on Dec. 30, 2020.

Prosecutors charged Wilson with two counts of aggravated vehicular hijacking and one count of vehicular hijacking in connection with those crimes last year. The cases are still winding their way through juvenile court.

 

On Sunday, Wilson ran from cops who stepped out of a patrol car to investigate the gun they report was sticking out of his waistband, according to prosecutors.

The officers chased him to a third-floor exterior porch on the 1500 block of South Sawyer. There, they allegedly saw Wilson with a gun in his hand. He threw it from the porch into a neighboring yard, according to prosecutors. The police arrested him and retrieved a loaded gun from the yard.

Prosecutors charged him with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.

Assistant Public Defender Suzin Farber argued against the state’s no-bail request by pointing out that Wilson has never been convicted of any crime and noted that he is the father of a 6-month-old child.

Judge Barbara Dawkins agreed that the state presented “a rather extraordinary request” when it asked to hold Wilson without bail given his lack of convictions and the relatively low-level felony gun charge he now faces, according to CWB Chicago, a community-funded news service that focuses on public-safety issues.

But after examining the state’s legal requirements for no-bail holds, Dawkins concluded:

“I do believe in this case it is warranted.”

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As Chicago crime skyrockets, suddenly liberals are starting to realize “bail reform” was a really bad idea

January 20, 2022

CHICAGO, IL – The East Lake View Neighbors held their first virtual meeting of the year on January 6th in which the topic was the growing crime rate in the city of Chicago.

One of the biggest items of note during the meeting was a State Senator conceding that the new bail reform law needs “a lot of changes.”

One of the main topics of the Zoom meeting was how the city and state leaders are working to ensure the safety of their citizens after the city finished its deadliest year since the 1990s.

Some believe that it is safer to remain in their homes than go out into the community for shopping or entertainment, something that City Alderman Tom Tunney thinks is a disgrace. Tunney said:

“We need people to be out and not afraid. The idea of staying in our homes, I don’t believe that’s the answer.”

Tunney went on to say that he and fellow alderman James Cappleman have pushed the issue of restaffing the 19th police district with Democratic Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Police Superintendent David Brown.

The 19th District is responsible for patrolling Lakeview and surrounding neighborhoods.

When Lightfoot first came into office in 2019, the district housed 382 sworn police officers and increased to a total of 416. However, since that time, staffing in the precinct has shrunk to barely 300, a number which Tunney alleges equates to an increase in crime. He said:

“Do the math and see the consequences.”

Democratic Illinois State Senator Sara Feigenholtz, who was a proud supporter of the recent criminal justice reform bill that went into effect in 2021, spoke about the increase in crime and seemingly admitted that there were errors in the bill. She said:

“We are looking very closely to some of the reforms that we enacted. It’s a big bill, and we’re gonna have to go back and make a lot of changes and remediate.

I don’t think that anybody bargained for repeat offenders and people who were in possession of a gun and accused of violent crime to be released on a bond…We have a lot of work to do.”

While the alderman’s that were present and Feigenholtz seem to concede that repeat offenders may be a problem, Cook County Assistant District Attorney Aileen Bhandari disagrees.

Bhandari claims that few violent offenders have been released on bond or electronic monitoring that go on to commit new crimes.

Bhandari cited a study conducted by Loyola University which found that 17 percent of defendants were charged with new crimes while on some type of bail in Cook County. The problem with the study is that it only analyzed information from late 2017 until early 2018.

More recent data, released by Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans in June of 2021, shows that 18.2 percent of people who are out on a felony bond are being charged with new crimes.

According to CWB Chicago, that number has been steadily increasing since 2017.

After Bhandari provided her reasoning as to why the recent bail reform laws have little impact on public safety, Feigenholtz chimed in:

“You talk about a Loyola study and blah blah blah…when you say you can’t tell us, you can’t give us data on who has violated conditions of their electronic monitoring and bond?”

Bhandari admitted that she did not have the number of those persons who are out on bond and/or electronic monitoring that go on to commit different crimes or violations of their release. She said:

“I don’t know how those numbers, because there’s a combination between the clerk’s office, bail bonds being filed…”

What this could mean, to Feigenholtz’s point, is that the Cook County judicial system is playing semantics when it comes to reporting who is being arrested while out on bond and/or electronic monitoring.

Are officials with the Cook County Judicial system only releasing information for new violent crime offenses and not the real number of everyone out on bond and/or electronic monitoring being arrested for any offense and/or violation of their bond requirements?

 

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