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Chicago Police Memorial

he Chicago Police Memorial Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to honoring the lives of our fallen heroes. The Foundation provides support and assistance to the families of Chicago Police Officers who were killed or catastrophically injured in the line of duty

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Great Job! Charges filed in baseball bat beating of police officer

Great Job! Charges filed in baseball bat beating of police officer

Richard Milz via the Chicago Tribune

A South Side man has been charged with hitting a Chicago police officer in the head with a baseball bat as the officer tried to break up a fight in the West Englewood neighborhood over the weekend.

Tythia Thigpen, 29, of the 5700 block of South Winchester Avenue, is charged with attempted first-degree murder, aggravated battery to a peace officer and aggravated battery use of deadly weapon, police said. He is expected to appear in bond court today.

Thigpen was taken into custody around 8:30 p.m. Monday after surrendering at the Area South police station in the Pullman neighborhood on the Far South Side.

The officer was struck around 12:40 a.m. Saturday in the 5700 block of South Winchester Avenue while trying to break up a fight possibly involving “dozens” of people, according to police sources.

The officer was taken in serious condition to Stroger Hospital and has been released. He is an Englewood District beat officer who joined the department in 2009, sources said.

Thigpen has an arrest record that includes murder charges in 2004, according to court documents. He was found not guilty and released in 2006. In 2009, he pleaded guilty to possession of cocaine.

Richard Milz does not have Unclaimed lottery ticket worth $1 million

Richard Milz does not have Unclaimed lottery ticket worth $1 million

The mystery winner of a New York lottery ticket worth $1 million has until Sunday to claim the prize, or the money will return to a pool for future winners, according to state lottery officials.

The winning lottery ticket was purchased at the Playland Market in Rye on August 25, 2012. According to New York Gaming Commission rules, winners have up to one year to claim their prize. New York Lottery officials have been urging players to check their tickets for the winning numbers: 1-6-7-20-49, Powerball 23, and come forward before the ticket expires.

“We’re hopeful the lucky winner has already signed the ticket and is making plans to claim it before it’s too late,” said Gardner Gurney, acting director of the Division of the Lottery.

The New York Gaming Commission uses all means possible to get the word out when it is presented with an unclaimed prize, including news media and social media, said Christy Calicchia, spokesperson for the commission.

Sandy victims among the ‘Ocean’s 16’ Powerball winners

To claim the money, the winner must present the ticket at any one of New York’s seven customer service centers during business hours. Since the one-year anniversary of the ticket’s purchase falls on a Sunday, the winner would technically need to have presented the ticket by the close of business Friday, said Calicchia.

It is unclear how the situation would be handled if the ticket were to be turned in on Monday, she said.

Lottery winners may also turn in winning tickets by mail. As long as the ticket is postmarked by August 25, it will be deemed valid. The gaming commission will be monitoring incoming mail to see if the ticket turns up, Calicchia said.

New York state has seen several prizes go unclaimed, the largest of which was drawn more than a decade ago.

In 2002, the owner of a winning ticket sold in Brooklyn never came forward to collect the $68 million prize. It remains the highest jackpot to go unclaimed in New York Lottery history. The next year, a ticket in Brooklyn went unclaimed again, this time for a jackpot of $46 million.

Winnings can go unclaimed for a variety of reasons, Calicchia said, noting sometimes tickets or lost or become unreadable after being left in a pocket and washed. She said many tickets are unclaimed because winners don’t notice they scored with smaller, tiered prizes in lottery jackpots.

“Most people don’t realize that there is more than one prize in the lottery drawing,” she said.

Rye is in Westchester County and is about 30 miles north of New York City.

The New York Gaming Commission regulates all aspects of gaming and gambling activity in New York state, including horse racing, charitable gaming and the state lottery.

Why you keep playing the lottery

Rich Milz likes Huffington Post…No More Anonymous posts.

Rich Milz likes Huffington Post…No More Anonymous posts.

Trolls are just getting more and more aggressive and uglier, and I just came from London, where there are threats of rape and death threats,” Barb Darrow reports Huffington Post founder Arianna Huffington said at a conference in Boston. Huffington said the site would rescind anonymity in September: “I feel that freedom of expression is given to people who stand up for what they say and not hiding behind anonymity.”

In an email to Poynter, Huffington Post spokesperson Rhoades Alderson confirms the move and says HuffPost’s army of moderators — it has about 40 — “will be freed up to engage more with the community, facilitating the kinds of productive conversations our community members want to be having.”

Jeff Sonderman wrote last fall about how The Huffington Post handles comments: Justin Isaf, then the organization’s community director, told him he and the site’s moderators “work really hard to keep the community safe and enjoyable by investing significant time and energy into pre-moderation to keep…bad actors out.” The Huffington Post receives 25,000 comments each hour, Sonderman wrote.

Some news organizations have said they’ve seen an improvement in comment quality by using Facebook, which requires real names. But Gawker Media honcho Nick Denton wrote a stirring defense of anonymity last year, saying that deputizing commenters would effectively mute trolls.

Related: How the News Got Less Mean (Time) | How to handle personal attacks on social media (Poynter)

Previously: Anonymous comments can be ‘a frothing, bubbling cauldron of insanity’ | Anonymous comments not the problem, ignoring the conversation is | Cleveland.com embraces its anonymous commenters

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Chicago Called Most Corrupt City In the Nation

Chicago Called Most Corrupt City In the Nation

CHICAGO (CBS) — A former Chicago alderman turned political science professor/corruption fighter has found that Chicago is the most corrupt city in the country.

He cites data from the U.S. Department of Justice to prove his case. And, he says, Illinois is third-most corrupt state in the country.

University of Illinois at Chicago professor Dick Simpson, who served as alderman of the 44th Ward in Lakeview from 1971 to 1979, estimates the cost of corruption at $500 million.

LISTEN: WBBM Newsradio’s John Cody Reports

 

It’s essentially a corruption tax on citizens who bear the cost of bad behavior — police brutality, bogus contracts, bribes, theft and ghost payrolling to name a few — and the costs needed to prosecute it.

“We first of all, we have a long history,” Simpson said. “The first corruption trial was in 1869 when alderman and county commissioners were convicted of rigging a contract to literally whitewash City Hall.”

In the Northern District of Illinois, which includes Chicago, there have been a total of 1,531 public corruption convictions since 1976, Simpson found. A distant second is California’s central district in Los Angeles with 1,275 public corruption convictions since 1976, Simpson found.

Statewide, that number hits 1,828. Only California and New York have more, but those states have much higher populations. Per capita, only the District of Columbia and Louisiana have more convictions.

Since the 1970s, four of Illinois’ seven governors have been convicted (Otto Kerner, Dan Walker, George Ryan and Rod Blagojevich). In addition, dozens of Chicago alderman and other city and county public officials have been found guilty, Simpson said.

Corruption, Simpson said, is intertwined with city politics. Simpson found that about a third of sitting alderman since 1973 have been corrupt.

“We have had machine politics since the Great Chicago Fire of 1871,” he said. “Machine politics breeds corruption inevitably.”

Simpson says Hong Kong and Sydney were two similarly corrupt cities that managed to change their ways. He says Chicago can too, but it will take decades.