Chicago police scrambled to respond to hundreds of teenagers swarming the Lakeview neighborhood and terrorizing businesses and neighborhoods on Monday evening.
“They were jumping on cars, breaking glass, throwing things. I know my personal automobile was used as a bar for people,” a witness told WGN-TV.
The woman told WGN that she called police but got a distressing response.
“I was told that there was nothing they could do,” the concerned resident said. “They were so overwhelmed at the moment that there were just way too many calls coming in.”
The takeover started when the teenagers poured out of the Belmont Red Line stop on the Chicago “L” train at about 10 p.m.
Video from the incident showed many of the teenagers dancing on top of cars and drinking in the streets.
Residents of the neighborhood said they discovered vandalism to their cars, including broken windows and large dents.
One restaurant owner told WGN that they immediately closed their business after seeing the teenagers causing chaos. They watched over the business all night to prevent any vandalism.
Resident Grace Rohen told WGN that she was terrified and heard some gunshots overnight.
“It has been very chaotic and as somebody who’s lived in Lakeview for honestly the past three years, it’s very scary to see how things have changed over time,” said Rohen.
A local official helped the clean-up effort on Tuesday and issued a statement.
“I will be meeting with the 19th district police, CTA, and others to discuss what took place and identify ways we can prevent it from occurring moving forward,” said 44th Ward Alderman Bennett Lawson. “As well as continue conversations with my colleagues on city council about how we can keep our youth from participating in these disruptive actions ”
Despite hundreds of teenagers participating in the takeover, only two people were arrested. One of the two people arrested was a 15-year-old girl who was charged with obstructing traffic and aggravated assault of a first responder.
Here’s a local news report about the teen takeover: