The Chicago Way…
From Chicago Sun Times: After his pal tried to clout his way out of a parking ticket by uttering that classic Chicago question, “Do you know who I am?” Cook County Commissioner Luis Arroyo Jr. didn’t hesitate to intervene and use his political weight to get the ticket tossed out.
It doesn’t hurt that that friend whose ticket Arroyo helped to get voided was Luis Pena, who Arroyo said is the 36th Ward superintendent for Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36th) — who is also Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s City Council floor leader.
But Arroyo on Friday insisted he wasn’t just protecting his buddy, but all Latinos. He said he stepped in to make sure “[Latinos] are being treated fairly by our officers. That goes for all Latinos in Cook County, not just someone I know.”
Though Arroyo admitted to the Chicago Sun-Times that he was the unnamed commissioner at the center of the 2018 ticket episode, the political fallout may not be over.
The latest chapter in the saga of Chicago clout began with the release of a Cook County inspector general’s report on Monday and saw the resignation a day later of the Cook County Forest Preserve Police chief.
In that report, Inspector General Patrick Blanchard found that Pena used his political connections to make a $250 parking ticket disappear.
According to the ticket, which was obtained by the Sun-Times through a Freedom of Information Act request, Pena was ticketed for parking in a handicapped spot Sept. 8, 2018, and was fined $250.
When he was handed the ticket, Pena allegedly asked the officer and an accompanying trainee “Do you know who I am?”
Pena then called Arroyo about the ticket, who contacted a “high-ranking [Forest Preserve Police] official” about voiding the citation, according to the report. The commissioner said the officer “displayed a poor attitude” and asked for the cop to be sent to his office for questioning, the report said.
The ticket was later dismissed, but the officer was sent to Arroyo’s office to be “personally subjected to criticism,” the inspector general’s report said.
Read the whole story here.
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