Democratic Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot has faced widespread backlash for her positions and policies from various groups — including those in local law enforcement.
A group of city police officers recently snubbed the mayor when she visited a hospital where another officer was fighting for his life after a deadly shooting that left a female officer dead.
One officer dead, another critically injured
According to reports, the injured male officer’s father was engaged in a confrontation with Lightfoot at the hospital as about 30 cops turned their backs on her in a gesture of contempt.
The incident occurred after a shooting at around 9 p.m. on Saturday during which 29-year-old officer Ella French was fatally shot during a traffic stop in West Englewood. Two brothers have since been arrested in connection with the murder.
At about midnight, the mayor showed up at the hospital where Frnech’s male colleague was being treated for critical injuries. Lightfoot reportedly attempted to console that officer’s father — himself a retired Chicago police officer — but was rebuffed. Instead, the man shouted at Lightfoot and blamed her for what happened to his son.
Roughly 30 cops turned their backs on Lightfoot in what appeared to be a choreographed gesture. Lightfoot was said to have been “shaken” by the incident.
In a statement on the matter, Fraternal Order of Police President John Catanzara indicated that the mood at the hospital reflected how many of the city’s officers feel about the progressive mayor.
“Emotions run high and that is to be expected”
“The police officers’ decision to turn their backs on the mayor while waiting with the family on the 7th floor was significant,” he said. “Turning their backs on the mayor was an excellent example of how the hundreds of police officers felt waiting outside the hospital.”
Catanzara told Fox News that Lightfoot had been warned to stay away from the hospital’s 7th floor, where the male officer’s family was, but she proceeded nonetheless. For her part, the mayor attempted to downplay or dismiss the encounter.
“The mayor was present at the emergency room to offer support and condolences to the families involved and the hundreds of line officers and exempts who were there, which she did,” a statement from her office advised. “In a time of tragedy, emotions run high and that is to be expected. The mayor spoke to a range of officers that tragic night and sensed the overwhelming sentiment was about concern for their fallen colleagues.”
Despite the best efforts of Chicago cops, the city is still plagued by violence. More than a dozen victims were killed and 73 were wounded in shootings across the city over the weekend.