Monday, November 3, 2008

Neighborhoods throughout Peoria are crying out

This past Wednesday, a known felon was arrested at an East Bluff home (1123 E. Elmhurst Ave) and booked on charges of possession of weapons by a felon, possession of a controlled substance and possession and delivery of marijuana. Five other people were also arrested in connection to the case. I read about the "central Peoria drug bust" on two local blogs at least a day before information appeared in the Peoria Journal Star.

This felon had about two pounds of marijuana, 45 grams of cocaine, eight rocks of crack cocaine, body armor and five guns and was able to bail out by paying $3,000.

Most Peorians first got the story about the drug bust from the news reports of a news conference held in front of the Police Department, by Mayor Ardis and five members of the City Council. State's Attorney, Kevin Lyons feels that the news conference was politically motivated. Is it a coincidence that the Mayor and these same five members of the City Council endorsed Lyons' opponent for State's Attorney, Darin LaHood?

I am glad the Mayor's Office is showing that they intend to hold somebody accountable for crime in Peoria, but shouldn't that person be the Police Chief?

From my neighborhood, the news conference looks shady. Don't we read daily about the murders, serial rapists, drug busts, muggings, robberies, guns, and hookers on the East Bluff? Where is our news conference? Our neighborhood association, in cooperation with surrounding neighborhood associations are active. City Council members and police officers regularly show up to speak at our meetings. We have set up neighborhood watches, we call the code enforcers, we turn people in, we are fighting for our neighborhood. Where is our news conference? How did our feelings of desperation escape the Mayor and City Council? You don't think it's because we are South of Forest Hill do you?