After another night of springtime chaos in downtown Chicago, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced she’s banning minors from Millennium Park on weekend evenings unless they’re accompanied by an adult, reports WBEZ radio. Declaring the city “cannot allow any of our public spaces to become platforms for danger,” Lightfoot said unaccompanied minors won’t be allowed in one of the city’s most iconic tourist attractions after 6 p.m. from Thursday through Sunday, unless they’re with “at least one responsible adult.” The mayor announced the measure after a frenetic stretch from Saturday evening into early Sunday that started with crowds of young people congregating in the Loop — and ended with a 16-year-old boy fatally shot, two men wounded in a separate attack nearby and 26 juveniles and five adults arrested.
“Tragically, a young person — a teenager — lost his life last night in Millennium Park,” Lightfoot said. "I suspect an overwhelming majority of the youth who were in the park were there to have a good time and enjoy a summer evening. But the scene devolved into one of chaos and unnecessary violence.” The mayor said the policy “will be strictly enforced and violations will be dealt with swiftly.” Police Superintendent David Brown wouldn’t give specifics on how officers will enforce the new policy. “It’s got to be strategic and surgical in the way we do it, one step at a time instead of this broad measure that you might have to pull back because it’s too broad and not effective,” Brown said. The American Civil Liberties Union said, "The vague description — relying on an undefined ‘responsible adult’ — allowing young people to be present in the park and the promise of strict enforcement will result in unnecessary stops and arrests and further strain relations between [the police department] and young people of color."