Copy and pasted is this email dated Saturday to McHenry County Sheriff Keith Nygren’s top assistant Andy Zinke:
Please pass this on to everyone you know. More than 14 thefts in Marengo.
Subj: NO THEY ARE NOT “RUMORS”
Oh, please do call on Monday. I will be here with bells on.
I am sorry I was mistaken as to who actually “stole” my contact list. It was unclear to me with all the forwarding of the emails. I will take that up with Jack Frank’s office at a later date.
YES, the word “rumor” offended me because I am a single mom who is juggling work and homeschooling my 10 year old daughter AND trying hard to get the word out to an otherwise uninformed community.
Gathering the information wasn’t difficult, I have a lot of contacts. On the other hand, putting it all together in a report via email took MY time, and I made sure my information was accurate before sending it out.
If I did NOT hear about these incidents from the horse’s mouth, I heard them from their neighbor or their friends. I am not guessing here or spreading false information or “rumors” as it was stated. I can tell you about EACH one of the incidents in my original email, and who I heard it from if you’d like. There is not ONE person that would mind me giving you their phone number if you need it to follow up.
I sincerely hope you can understand my frustration with having the community I live in, neglected to be informed. These are not cars or garages being broken into, these are people’s HOMES. Somebody is going to get hurt eventually if this is not stopped and SURELY if YOUR citizens are not aware of the situation. In my heart of hearts, I truly believe that in 4 incidents, the police WOULD have been called immediately or someone could have picked up a plate number of a vehicle if only they KNEW what was going on. But they didn’t know.
I used to serve on the Crimestoppers Unit in Marengo. I quit. The reason I quit is because of the same frustration I am having right now: It was no use trying to get the police department or the Northwest Herald to try and cooperate with us “Joe Citizens” by helping us stay informed. They just wouldn’t do it. I begged both the chief of police and the Northwest Herald to get it together to let us know when REAL crime was happening in our town. Instead, they only informed us of petty incidents we couldn’t give a hoot about such as people driving without licenses or who beat up who.
When I called the Northwest Herald and asked why REAL crime like burglaries were NOT reported in the paper, they said they could only print what the police department sent them. When I called the police department, they said they release everything to the Northwest Herald and they have no control over what they print or don’t print. (are you starting to see the run-around I was given??) Soooooooo, I called back the Northwest Herald and asked WHY they are not printing what the police give them, and they said they print EVERYTHING the police give them, and there are NEVER any burglary reports. I met with the chief of police at the Crimestopper’s meeting and he said they just did not have enough manpower to sit and send everything to the paper. At this point, I VOLUNTEERED my time to go to the police department weekly and sift through, and write out reports to the Northwest Herald for them since they were so “under-staffed.” I was turned down. Hmmmmmmmmmm. Makes you wonder, doesn’t it????
In one case, I was in a meeting with the chief of police of Marengo (not this one, the last one) and he sat there and bold-faced LIED to me and said he didn’t remember anything about the incident where the little girl was abducted from the Subway Sandwich shop (rt. 23 and rt. 20.) I told him we, as citizens, had a RIGHT to know this information and were tired of the “Norman Rockwell” stories that were being printed in the police report section of the newspapers. I told him I understood that pretending crime isn’t happening here helps the police department, the Mayor, and pretty much the whole town appear more “attractive,” however, it was not keeping his community safe. He told me he didn’t remember any incident such as that. I kept my mouth shut during the meeting and afterwards, went straight to the grandfather of the child of whom I was speaking about. That happened to be Gene Carrachi. <<
You don’t need to tell me that the job of a police officer is difficult. My stepfather was police officer in Chicago. Believe me, I understand that better than most. But, if I remember correctly, the job of a police officer is to “serve” and “protect.” Well, I’m not seeing a lot of protecting happening here, when for about two weeks now, (that I’m personally aware of) there have been a number of burglaries and NOBODY IS MAKING ANYONE AWARE OF THEM! (AND YES, I’M YELLING!)
Oh, and before you try to feed me the line I’ve heard so many times about “when there is an investigation going on, nobody wants anything to go to print in the newspaper because it could tip off the perpetrators,” let me tell you your public is not as stupid as you think. There is NO reason why, even during a robbery investigation, simple facts could not be reported such as addresses or at least street names so people can be alerted. We not only feel like sitting ducks here, but rather more like “bait.”
I can’t believe you are still trying to convince me you have only had 3 reports. Oh, and by the way, I KNOW the difference between the unincorporated area of Marengo being “served” by the McHenry County Sheriff’s office and the town of Marengo being “served” by the Marengo P.D. …really, you have GOT to be kidding me. Aren’t you working off the same computer base? ….because REALLY??…I have NAMED the streets where the burglaries happened, and I can NAME 4 of the families IN THE UNINCORPORATED area that this has happened to. Call Brad Schuman at Country Company Insurance, yeah, just him, just one company in Marengo and HE can give you information too, but that would be a complete waste of time since it seems ridiculously-impossible for you not to have this information already.
Because I am blind carbon copying this letter to EVERYONE on my contact list, I am going to leave out names and phone numbers of the residents whose homes have been burglarized here in YOUR district. But do please contact me on Monday and I will be HAPPY to give you any information you tell me you don’t have.
Perhaps you should check the internet connection on your server for your police department because I’m sorry, but for an Undersheriff not to have the same information (and more) than I do as a mere citizen, seems awfully bizarre to myself and many others in this community.
The above is in reply to this email dated Friday:
Subject: RE: RUMORS???
Thank you for your message and your willingness to send and receive information for the community. Hopefully, you realize that I did not send an e-mail message to anyone other than Lori at Jack Franks Office. Apparently, she forwarded it to you and others. I am glad you took the time to read it, and apologize if the word rumor offended you..
The message refers to unincorporated McHenry County, that is the area the Sheriff’s Office patrols. If you are aware of any burglaries or robberies that have occurred in our jurisdiction and have not been reported, please send me the victim’s name/address. We will send a deputy to their residence immediately to take a report and investigate. If your concerns are within the city limits of Marengo, please contact the Marengo Police Department. I’m sure they too, will respond and investigate any reports. Though the Sheriff’s Office does not monitor or maintain records for the Marengo Police Department, I’m sure they are actively investigating any burglaries or robberies within the town.
A press release was prepared and disseminated by our Office. That press release only includes information that our Office can confirm, and has occurred in unincorporated McHenry County. Hopefully, it will be in the newspaper this weekend.
I am concerned for the entire county and the community in which you live. We are actively investigating the 3 burglaries in the Marengo area, I mentioned. Our deputies and detectives have been diligently patrolling the Marengo area. We have established extra patrols in the area and have already completed several extra details with undercover vehicles/investigators. Daytime burglars can be difficult to apprehend, especially in such a large unincorporated area. As you know the job of a police officer is difficult. We need your help and the help of your neighbors. Please report any suspicious activity, vehicles or people to the police.
Thank you for your message, and I will call you on Monday.
Undersheriff Andrew Zinke, McHenry County Sheriff’s Office