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Chicago Police Chief Leaves Office After More Than Two Years Of Surging Crime

Chicago Police Department (CPD) Superintendent David Brown officially left office Thursday, according to WTTW, ending a tenure marked by surging crime.

Brown announced he would resign on March 1, The New York Times reported, the day after incumbent Mayor Lori Lightfoot lost her re-election bid to former Chicago Public Schools CEO Paul Vallas and Cook County Commissioner Brandon Johnson, who had both pledged to fire Brown if elected, according to WBEZ Chicago. Lightfoot appointed Brown in April 2020, and Chicago had a more than 40% increase in major crime complaints between 2020 and 2022, CPD data shows.

Though murder complaints declined by about 10% in 2022 compared to 2020, motor vehicle theft complaints rose by roughly 116%, the CPD data indicates. The CPD installed First Deputy Superintendent Eric Carter on Thursday to temporarily replace Brown, according to WTTW.

Chicago and other cities went through protests and rioting after the May 2020 Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd, with property damage and looting reportedly costing Chicago businesses more than $65 million within two months, according to CBS Chicago. An independent monitoring team’s report released the next year said Chicago and its police department had been “unprepared” to deal with the situation’s magnitude, WTTW reported.

Brown revealed on March 1 that he had accepted a new job as CEO of the Texas-based personal injury law firm Loncar Lyon Jenkins, according to the outlet. He led the Dallas Police Department from 2010 to 2016.

Vallas and Johnson will compete in an April 4 runoff election for mayor. The Chicago Fraternal Order of Police endorsed Vallas in January, and he has since accused Johnson of wanting to defund the police, despite Johnson’s denial.

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