(JTA) – Jewish families in the West Rogers Park neighbourhood of Chicago have hired off-duty Chicago police officers to patrol the neighbourhood in the wake of several anti-Semitic incidents.
The armed officers were hired to patrol a 16-block area populated largely by Orthodox Jewish families on Shabbat and holidays, when residents walk to synagogue and do not carry cell phones, DNAinfo-Chicago reported.
More than 25 families pay $25 a month for the extra security.
The Chicago Police are not happy with the arrangement, according to the news website.
“It was brought to our attention there was a group of citizens in the area that don’t feel the police are serving the community the best we can,” Sgt. Shawn Sisk, who leads the district’s community policing office, told DNAinfo. “We can’t stop that from happening; however, we’re not going to support it. We don’t want that to send a false sense of security to the neighbourhood.”
Incidents over the last six months include anti-Semitic graffiti, robbery at gunpoint and anonymous envelopes filled with white powder and Arabic writing sent to several Jewish organizations in the area.