Keith Thornton Jr. — a Chicago police dispatcher who was once praised by Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) for his quick thinking and heroic work while on the job — has now released a video slamming Lightfoot and other city officials such as the Superintendent of Police David Brown for allowing Chicago to become a “death zone” due in part to understaffing and lack of police in certain areas.
In a Facebook video posted late Thursday night last week, Thornton ripped Lightfoot for not caring about Chicago police officers and failing to protect Chicago residents, specifically in the 16th district of the city otherwise known as the Jefferson Park district.
“Today we’re talking about the northwest side of Chicago, and this was brought to my attention by several of my officers who have texted me, ‘OK’ and said that they were scared,” Thornton said via a Facebook live. “They’re tired of this nonsense. They have no backing and they’re scared of being out there by themselves, working in the 16th District. We’re talking about the 16th District.”
CWBChicago reported that, “The Jefferson Park district was staffed by 268 officers when Brown became superintendent in April 2020. There are 229 assigned to the district this month, according to the Chicago Office of Inspector General.”
“And I’m going to tell you right now, 16th District is so shorthanded with officers that when you call 9-1-1, you’re not getting a quick response like many other parts of the city,” he continued. “Officers are not coming to you. And why? Because they can’t be assigned cars to go to you because we have very few officers within these neighborhoods. And it’s nonsense.”
“And I’m not talking about a dog running or barking or a car alarm going off or, ‘Hey, this guy’s parked in my handicapped spot,'” he continued.
“I’m talking about females being beaten. Shootings — a shooting came up a few days ago and we couldn’t even get a unit over there. A unit could not even get to that scene until 10 plus minutes later because there was no one,” he claimed.
Thornton’s video came the same day that the Chicago Tribune reported an increase in violence in areas of the city that are not known for being dangerous areas:
Carjackings continued to increase around the city. Children, seniors and even transit workers found themselves victims in areas that are not known for violence.
A review of the two years that coincide with the COVID-19 pandemic reveals a dramatic uptick in both homicides and shootings across the city, with a more-than-60% increase in both categories that increased pressure on policymakers to find answers.
As for why Lightfoot is allowing crime to happen, Thornton claimed that Lightfoot simply did not care about areas like the 16th district and also only cared about herself.
“I’m hot about it because this mayor does not care about Chicago police officers, period. She doesn’t care about any first responders. She does not care about the d*** city. It doesn’t matter if you’re white, black, Asian, Hispanic, other, straight, gay, Democrat, or Republican. She don’t even care about her city workers. All that lady cares about is her f***ing self.”
“And I pray you’re watching this because you’re a disgrace and I’m tired of it,” he said toward Lightfoot. “And your city is tired of it. Matter of fact, it’s not your city. The city of Chicago is tired of it.”
“And I know you don’t like me, and that’s OK, because I love you,” he said pointedly, “but I’m tired of you because you’re an absolute disgrace to everyone within the city.”
“This city is burning. And either I can let it burn,” Thornton said at one point.” Either you guys can let it burn or we can stand up, do something about it, and get burned for it.”
“We’ve got to come together,” Thornton concluded, offering to speak with anybody who would help solve the problem of violence, including Lightfoot. “We’ve got to come together for our area because this is bull s***. Good night.”
The full video can be seen here: