Chicago police and Norfolk Southern Railroad parked a truck of Nike shoes and other goods in a poor neighborhood in order to entice and catch people stealing the merchandise.
Charles Mckenzie filmed the police, and posted the video on Facebook with a description:
The police parked a truck with boxes of Nike shoes infront of kids lifted up and when people hop in the truck the police hopping out on them, smh check on your people share this.
Alderman Roderick Sawyer, chair of the City Council’s Black Caucus, slammed the police “bait truck,” notes the Chicago Tribune:
This bait truck operation is an unacceptable and inappropriate use of police resources. In a moment where police capacity is clearly under extreme strain, these sort of tactics are the last thing we should be spending manpower and energy on.
Susan Terpay, a spokeswoman for the Norfolk Southern Railroad police, claimed they were targeting people who have been breaking into freight containers in rail yards and nearby areas:
The suspects saw a parked, unmarked trailer and then proceeded to cut open the safety seal with box cutters, broke into the back of the trailer and only then did they find retail shoes in unmarked brown boxes, previously secured and hidden inside.
While police spend taxpayer money on their sting operation, 66 people were shot and 12 people died last weekend, noted WLS.
Karen Sheley, director of the ACLU of Illinois’ police practices project, also slammed the apparent entrapment:
Police in Chicago must focus on building trust and better relationships within the communities they serve, not engage in stunts like bait trucks. The Chicago Police Department admits that it can’t solve murders and violent crimes because communities of color don’t trust the Chicago police. These stunts won’t help.