House Judiciary Committee Holds Hearing in Chicago on Violent Crime

Urgent Testimony Highlights Crisis: Chicago's Unchecked Violent Crime Calls for Reform!
Urgent Testimony Highlights Crisis: Chicago's Unchecked Violent Crime Calls for Reform!
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On Tuesday, the House Judiciary Committee held a hearing on the rampant violent crime plaguing Chicago, Illinois, and several individuals were called on to share their harrowing experiences with members of Congress. One particularly moving account was given by Fox News commentator Gianno Galdwell, who tragically lost his younger brother to a shooting in Chicago last year.

“I truly wish that it was not my place to be before you today. But, I believe I have no choice,” Caldwell began. “I unfortunately understand the pain of thousands of victims whose families have been destroyed. On June 24 of last year, I received a call that my innocent teenage baby brother Christian had been murdered. Shot down in the street by a stranger…the police have repeatedly said that my brother was not the target, that he just happened to be at the wrong place at the wrong time. But in Chicago, being at the wrong place at the wrong time could be sleeping in your bed and a bullet comes through your window.”

Caldwell went on to emphasize the devastating impact of “soft on crime” policies, which allow criminals to operate with impunity and no fear of consequences. “We have to change that immediately…law and order is the only way we’re going to change the situation here in the city of Chicago,” he asserted. Caldwell also called out Democratic politicians who claim to support the Black Lives Matter movement but failed to attend the hearing.

During the hearing, Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) raised the issue of prosecutors who fail to appropriately charge criminal cases, leading to potential safety issues for witnesses. “Do the witnesses potentially fear that despite their participation in the criminal justice system, they might be subject to some retaliation?” he asked.

Chicago Police Officer Carlos Yanez, Jr., himself a victim of violent crime, replied in the affirmative. “Definitely, 100 percent,” he said. “Especially with this cash bond, you’re going to be releasing offenders and the first thing their lawyer tells them is, ‘there’s no victim, no witness, there’s no crime.’ So all they’re going to do is retaliate and threaten and at worst, maybe kill some of these re-victims – they’re going to basically re-victimize these victims and witnesses so they don’t have to have a trial or court.”

Yanez’s personal experience with violent crime is nothing short of shocking. He was shot five times, four of which were aimed at his head, when he and other police officers were fired upon by a repeat offender during a routine traffic stop earlier this year. The shooter, who had acquired the weapon through a straw purchaser, killed one police officer and left Yanez partially paralyzed on the left side of his body with vision loss in one eye and hearing loss in both ears.

When Rep. Gaetz asked what Yanez would do to help other communities avoid becoming like Chicago, the officer replied that he was too concerned for his family’s safety to offer any concrete advice. “After the incident that happened to me, I had my family, and me, move out of the city…I just felt like I couldn’t protect my family the way that I used to,” he said.

In light of these heart-wrenching stories, it’s abundantly clear that Chicago desperately needs meaningful, decisive action to address its ongoing crisis of violent crime. Let’s hope that policymakers take these accounts to heart and work tirelessly to protect families and communities from the scourge of violence and lawlessness.

Next News Network Team

Next News Network Team

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