The top politician in Illinois is not opposed to using state police to help deal with Chicago’s ongoing violence problem.
Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn said he would be open to using state resources to assist the city, but only if local officials want the help. Quinn pointed out that state police have helped in places like East St. Louis, but that coordination from local authorizes is a necessary factor.
“It has to be done in a coordinated fashion with the local law enforcement, with their full cooperation,” Quinn told reporters Saturday, WSVN reported.
Quinn was asked about the idea following a mass shooting at a park on Chicago's southwest side Thursday night that left 13 people were wounded, including a 3-year-old boy. The shooting took place in area that city police officials refer to as a "high gang-conflict zone."
It is suspected that an assault rifle was used in Thursday’s shooting at Cornell Square Park. Quinn was said in the past that one of his goals is to eliminate assault rifles. “I think anyone who saw what happened in Cornell Park the other night was horrified by the violence. I live on the West Side of Chicago. It is an area that has been inflicted with violence, and we’ve got to protect the people,” Quinn said.
In 2008, then-Gov. Rod Blagojevich floated the idea of using the state police and National Guard to help Chicago police with “out of control” violence. According to reports, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has not approached Quinn about the possibility as of yet.