“Mayor Richard Daley on Saturday dismissed the notion that his administration’s failure to make good on a pledge to hire more police is affecting public safety, even as Chicago combats growing violent crime.

“‘No, no,’ said Daley when asked about the lack of new hires and the impact on city safety. When pressed, Daley bristled and said ‘It just won’t.'” – Carlos Sadovi, Chicago Tribune, 9/27/08

“During an appearance on WVUE-TV, Nagin also said that at a recent meeting of U.S. mayors, he chatted about crime cameras with Chicago’s Richard Daley: ‘I was just in Washington and Mayor Daley came up to me and he said, “Look, I like these crime cameras you guys are doing in New Orleans. They’re cheaper than hiring more police officers and we’re going to do them in a big way in Chicago.” ‘ ” – By Michelle Krupa, Frank Donze, and Bruce Eggler, New Orleans Times Picayune, 3/7/09

“‘What’s going on?’ one man asked. ‘We used to have over 100 arrests a month.’

“‘The budget’s been cut,’ one of the beat officers replied. ‘There was a newspaper article about it. Jody Weis is cutting the budget again; they’re retiring officers and only hiring 200 new ones. We’re going to be short 800 officers. But why don’t you come and look at the nice camera I have in my car?'” – Noah Isackson, Chicago Magazine, 3/09

“The newly discovered death means that the number of CPS students killed so far this school year, from September to March, has now surpassed the number of CPS students killed all of last school year, from September to June.” – staff, Sun-Times, 3/12/09

Links two and three via Second City Cop, which notes that the cold beginning of 2009 may have kept down crime, which in some respects is down slightly from the same time last year. I should make my usual caveat that correlation is not causation, and determining the causes of movement in crime statistics is an especially complex and heated subject. In 2007 Tori Marlan did an excellent interview with UIC researchers, who touched on the difficult issues regarding blue-light cameras versus human patrol. Definitely read the new Isackson piece, though.