CALUMET CITY | Third Ward Alderman Thaddeus Jones was in a feisty mood when he used a City Council meeting to make proposals that he said will benefit the safety of residents.
Jones reiterated an idea he has expressed in the past — creation of a website, or alteration of existing ones, to post pictures and other personal information about anyone who gets arrested in Calumet City.
He went so far as to ask the City Council to approve his suggestion, which was not written up in a specific proposal, but aldermen declined to act.
Attorney Joe Montana advised the council that it could be perceived as reckless to post such information, since someone who has been arrested technically is presumed innocent until a conviction or guilty plea is reached in the criminal case.
The aldermen did approve an alternate proposal — that the city post pictures and information about people convicted of criminal offenses in Calumet City.
But the Police Department or city government websites won’t be publishing that kind of information anytime soon.
Montana said he wants to study the issue further before Calumet City officials make information about criminal offenders public.
Mayor Michelle Markiewicz Qualkinbush said she could see such information being made public someday, although she’s not sure exactly when it would happen.
“I think we’re all in favor of doing this, once the attorney clears us to do so,” she said.
Jones said he doesn’t understand why the issue is problematic. He said he believes people have a right to know if someone has been arrested for a crime in, or near, their homes.
“These people, many of them, come from Chicago Heights or the city of Chicago to commit crimes here,” he said.