Locusts Descend, Loot and Plunder Downtown Chicago — Again

For the second time this summer, organized bands of thugs set upon downtown Chicago, pillaging the neighborhoods that make up the heart of the city.

Downtown Chicago looting, August 10, 2020
Downtown Chicago looting, August 10, 2020

The first time was May 30th, during the initial wave of protests over the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. Back then, while Chicago Police were busy with legitimate protesters, organized gangs of criminals hit The Loop, North Michigan Avenue, and adjacent shopping streets, smashing stores and hauling away brand-name merchandise by the gross.

While this was happening, terrified residents could only hide in their apartments and listen to their neighborhoods being destroyed by these thugs, as pleas for help to Chicago Police went unanswered for hours. Many of those residents, already suffering after months of unemployment because of the COVID-19 quarantine, found themselves without jobs as the businesses where they worked closed for repairs, or for good.

According to Chicago Police, this morning’s crime wave wasn’t the result of anger spawned by a legitimate protest. Instead simply a bunch of opportunistic hoodlums who thought that the police would be tied up with a shooting on the South Side long enough for them to fill their cars with stolen goods.

Downtown Chicago looting, August 10, 2020
Downtown Chicago looting, August 10, 2020

Some aldermen blame the looting in The Loop, the South Loop, Streeterville, the Gold Coast, Old Town, and Lincoln Park on a lack of prosecution of the criminals from the previous raid.

Police blame misinformation spread on social media. Specifically, there were thousands of messages sent claiming that Chicago Police shot and killed a child. The truth is that Chicago Police shot a 20-year-old man armed with a gun who shot at police. The police returned fire. But nobody cares about the truth on social media.

  • Chicago Police state that this appeared to be an organized raid on the city’s downtown, with a caravan of cars that staged on the South Side, then rolled en masse to loot the central business district.
  • The looters were organized. There are multiple reports of people at the stores loading up lines of cars and even U-Hauls with stolen merchandise in shifts.
  • The thugs were brazen. Police and media witnesses say that the criminals were not afraid of being caught. Some were seen leisurely trying on ill-gotten clothing in the stores as they were being looted.
  • The thugs were in it for the money, not for justice of any kind. Unlike the chaotic looting that comes with a riot, these thieves seemed to have shopping lists — picking certain brands clean, while leaving other merchandise untouched. Or specifically stealing individual high-value items, while passing over easier-to-get offerings.
Downtown Chicago looting, August 10, 2020
Downtown Chicago looting, August 10, 2020

The last time this happened, I got a lot of four-letter e-mails from people who defended the bandits as aggrieved protesters. Many of them accused me of being racist for posting pictures of the damage done by these dirtbags, while ironically hurling racist invectives at me. But there are certain indisputable facts at play here.

  • These weren’t protesters. Protesters don’t use vehicles as battering rams to smash open the Chanel store.
  • These weren’t people seeking justice. Justice can’t be found inside a looted Apple store.
  • These weren’t people rebelling against poverty. You don’t feed your family with an armload of Burberry cardigans.
  • This wasn’t about Chicago police. A Gucci purse didn’t shoot anyone on 57th Street.

I expect to get a lot of angry messages about this article, too. So when you flame me, look at the pictures in this post and explain to me how exactly those actions will bring about justice, end poverty, and foster racial equality.

This isn’t about race. It’s about right and wrong. If you don’t understand that what happened this morning was wrong, then you’re just broken.

And before you start calling me a “fat white fuck” again, note that I am the correct weight for my height, and that my body mass index is with the “normal” range. Flame on.

Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at

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