HomeCrimeBrazen Attack in Chinatown Calls For Increased Public Safety

Brazen Attack in Chinatown Calls For Increased Public Safety

An armed robbery in a restaurant in Chicago Chinatown sparked business leaders and community activists to demand more police presence in the area. 

At 11:49 p.m. on Wednesday, two male suspects wearing masks entered Ken Kee restaurant in South China Place with handguns and demanded money from the cashier, according to ABC7 Chicago. The employees complied and the robbers proceeded to steal from the two employees. 

The brazen attack at a restaurant well known and frequented by Chinatown residents sent shock waves through the neighborhood.

“Residents of Chinatown feel not safe at all, they cannot even celebrate early Valentine’s Day,” said Kim Tee, an activist and business owner pushing for better crime prevention told the Chicago Sun Times.

Tee also pointed to Chinatown’s especially vulnerable location that allows criminals to quickly escape.

“It’s so easy,” Tee told NBC 5 Chicago. “You hijack a car, you rob an individual and you get on the highway in less than a minute,” he said.

Lai Ching Ng, a candidate for state representative and resident of the neighborhood for 40 years, said the higher crime rate has changed her everyday behavior.

“We walk around, make sure nobody’s profiling you,” she told the Chicago Sun Times. “If we’re in the car and somebody’s too close, we stay in the car. We’re cautious about that.”

Ng also notes the need for better translation services to encourage residents to report crime that happen in the neighborhood. 

After the attack, the two robbers left by foot and are not in custody. Alderwoman Nicole Lee said she has been in touch with police and the Chinatown neighborhood watch group, and hopes that the surveillance video of the robbery will help investigators catch the suspect.

However, the Cook County Commissioner George Cardenas says there are limitations to surveillance videos.

“This particular community is vulnerable because there doesn’t seem to be a plan of action to deter criminals from coming in,” he said. “There’s surveillance but not enough.”

Residents echo this sentiment and demand more action from city leaders.

“I want my government thinking about us, thinking about my home. I want the government to give police back power and take care of my community,” Julie Mai, a resident, said to ABC7.

Community activists are currently offering a $2,000 reward for any information leading to an arrest in the Ken Kee robbery.

Suggested image: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Chicago_Chinatown_night.jpg

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