Lori Lightfoot blasts Chicago police over scanner blocking: ‘People don’t want to know what’s going on’

Fox News’ Cathy Pavlich criticized Chicago Mayor Laurie Lightfoot’s decision to block the media and the public’s access to police scanners, saying it would affect reporters’ ability to cover local crimes and put residents at risk.

“As far as police scanner traffic goes, it’s not only in the media, but it’s used by a lot of people in these neighborhoods so they know where they are when there’s a shooting or a high-speed chase. That’s it, and they’re moving themselves and their families to certain areas. they can defend against going,” he said on Thursday at Five.

Lightfoot announced in mid-December that the city would switch to using an encrypted radio frequency, accessible only to those with a decryption key.

Chicago Mayor Laurie Lightfoot speaks during a news conference on Thursday, Oct. 27, 2022, in Chicago, Illinois, U.S. Lightfoot defended his public safety strategy Wednesday after city council members, residents and a watchdog group raised concerns about police. lack of department staff and budget transparency. Photographer: Christopher Dilts/Bloomberg via Getty Images
(Christopher Dilts/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

The mayor hit back at critics who said the move was a form of censorship, insisting it was about police safety.

“If it’s not encrypted and accessible, there’s no way to control criminals who access, eavesdrop and change their criminal behavior in response to the information being reported,” he said at a news conference.

Pavlich said if Lightfoot really cared about police safety, he would stop supporting anti-crime policies.

“The bigger picture is, if you really want to protect police officers, Lori Lightfoot will put pressure on prosecutors to keep the revolving door of criminals on the street,” he said.

“These cops are confronting the same people over and over again, committing the same crimes in the same neighborhoods, and yet they’re still getting out of jail.”

Pavlich concluded that it all had to do with Lightfoot’s “not wanting people to know what was going on.”


A Chicago police officer monitors the scene after a shooting on March 14, 2021 in Chicago, Illinois.  - At least 15 people have been shot, two of them fatally, after an early party shooting at a South Chicago business.  March 14, 2021.

A Chicago police officer monitors the scene after a shooting on March 14, 2021 in Chicago, Illinois. – At least 15 people were shot, two of them dead, after a shooting at a South Chicago business during an early party. March 14, 2021.
(Kamil Krzacznski/AFP via Getty Images)

Co-host Greg Gutfeld agreed, adding the decision to block access to police scanners is a way for Lightfoot to change the narrative of growing crime in his city.

“If you’re concerned about police safety, it’s not a priority,” he said.

Gutfeld said the mayor has a history of acting “betrayed” when reporters cover the crime crisis.

“I think it’s uncomfortable for people like Laurie Lightfoot and others to address this topic because it’s guilty of never covering it, never addressing it, and supporting progressive policies like no cash and reduced sentencing. We to what we see now, he said.

A coalition of news organizations claims that the decision to block access to the scanners will hinder journalists’ ability to cover developments and warn the public about threats.

In a statement, the city of Chicago echoed Lightfoot’s comments, saying the move would improve officer safety. Media and the public will be able to access the 30-minute delayed broadcast, officials said.

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