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Welcome to the Reader's morning briefing for Tuesday, January 3, 2016. Happy New Year!
President-elect Donald Trump slammed Mayor Rahm Emanuel for not solving Chicago's ongoing gun violence issues. "Chicago murder rate is record setting - 4,331 shooting victims with 762 murders in 2016," he posted on Twitter Monday. "If Mayor can't do it he must ask for Federal help!" The 2016 murder rate didn't set a record, but it was a "nearly 60 percent from 2015 to the highest levels in 20 years," as the Tribune notes. Adam Collins, a spokesman for Mayor Rahm Emanuel, praised Trump for his interest in the violence issue. "As the president-elect knows from his conversation with the mayor, we agree the federal government has a strong role to play in public safety by funding summer jobs and prevention programming for at-risk youth, by holding the criminals who break our gun laws accountable for their crimes, by passing meaningful gun laws, and by building on the partnerships our police have with federal law enforcement," Collins said in a statement. [Tribune]
An off-duty cop shot a man in Hermosa Monday morning after a "verbal altercation," DNAinfo Chicago reports. The man later died at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center. The 57-year-old police officer was assigned to the Mass Transit Unit. The two men also had "a confrontation" that happened "a few weeks ago," Chicago Police Department chief Eddie Johnson said. "I have a lot more questions than I do answers at this time," he said. [DNAinfo Chicago]
Former Chicago police superintendent Garry McCarthy says he blames Black Lives Matter's "political atmosphere of anti-police sentiment" for the rise in gun violence in Chicago and violent crime in other parts of the country. "So what's happening—and this is ironic—is that a movement with the goal of saving black lives at this point is getting black lives taken, because 80 percent of our murder victims here in Chicago are male blacks," McCarthy said in an interview with AM 970 radio in New York. "Less than half of one percent of all the shootings in this city involve police officers shooting civilians." [The Hill]
President Barack Obama will return to McCormick Place on the evening of January 10 to give his farewell address to the nation. Obama wrote in an e-mail announcement that the speech is "a chance to say thank you for this amazing journey, to celebrate the ways you've changed this country for the better these past eight years, and to offer some thoughts on where we all go from here." Free tickets to the speech will be handed out to the public at McCormick Place on January 7. [New York Times] [WGN]
Rock icon Patti Smith celebrated her 70th birthday Friday evening in her hometown with a concert at the Riviera Theatre, featuring former R.E.M. lead singer Michael Stipe. Rolling Stone posted video of Stipe leading a chorus of "Happy Birthday" for Smith, and Smith and Stipe performing "People Have the Power." [Rolling Stone]
James Beard Award-winning chef Tony Mantuano's pizzeria Bar Toma closed Monday after five years in business. "It's heartbreaking," Mantuano, the well-known chef behind Spiaggia, Terzo Piano, and River Roast told the Tribune. "I think we had a really good thing going." Closing the Gold Coast restaurant he created was a "business decision," he said. [Tribune]