How did we do? Aurora police surveying citizens in first-of-its-kind initiative

You know those customer-satisfaction surveys you get after shopping, or staying at a hotel?

The Aurora Police Department is now doing the same of its clients — citizens who call for assistance — through a survey sent to people who’ve had contact with its personnel.

And in an initiative believed to be the first of its kind in the nation, the department is posting daily updated results on a public online dashboard.

“Receiving timely, open, and honest community feedback allows us to leverage our training, policies and procedures, and focus where our community values it the most,” Chief Keith Cross said.

The surveys are sent via text to people who use a cellphone to call police. The department uses the My90 program from Axon, the same company that sells police body and dashboard cameras and Taser stun guns.

The text contains a link to a survey. Responses are anonymous, and no identifying information is collected, police say.

So far, traffic safety and theft are showing up as top concerns among survey respondents. In response, police are conducting public education campaigns and focusing its patrols.

Respondents also want to see more visible patrols and more engagement with the community.

The survey questions are in four categories: procedural justice, community sentiment (Did your interaction leave you with a negative view? Were your concerns answered?), community input on safety concerns and demographics. The procedural justice segment breaks down the perceptions on how people perceive the agency by race and ethnicity.

The department does not survey those who have reported they are the victim of a traumatic or serious crime, because it does not want to revictimize people.

Officials say about 10% of those texted respond to the survey. In the last 30 days, 86% reported a positive view of the department — a decline from 90% the previous month.

For more information about My90 and to see the results, visit

Aurora police are asking community members who’ve had an interaction with officers to fill out an online survey about how it went. Daily Herald File Photo, 2022

Question gave him away?

When police investigating a bank robbery in McHenry County last week approached a suspect in a wooded area next door, he asked maybe the worst question possible.

Authorities allege that this is Peter Sova of McHenry robbing a bank last week in his hometown. Courtesy of U.S. District Court

“Have you caught the bank robber yet?”

That question, along with a bag of $5,000 cash located nearby, helped convince police they had indeed found the bank robber, according to federal court documents.

Peter Sova, 36, appeared last Friday before a U.S. District Court judge in Chicago on a bank robbery charge stemming from the May 6 heist of Huntington Bank in McHenry.

Authorities allege the McHenry man left his 9-month-old child home alone that morning to rob the bank.

According to the affidavit of an FBI agent, the robber entered the bank and handed over a note reading, “This is a bank robbery. Please give me your money in 10 seconds.” The robber then pointed to a bag and lifted it, showing what appeared to be the muzzle of a gun inside, according to the affidavit.

The teller handed over $4,895 to the robber before he fled on foot, authorities say. But a police dog soon caught his scent, leading officers to the woods where they spotted Sova carrying a bag, the FBI affidavit states.

Sova, who’s also facing charges including child abandonment in McHenry County, was granted pretrial release during his court appearance last week, but will be on home monitoring, according to court documents.

Peter Sova

We’re #2

Thanks to a combination of good pay, opportunities for advancement and efforts to keep cops safe, Illinois is the second-best state in the country for law-enforcement officers, according to a new report from the personal finance website WalletHub.

The report says Illinois police earn the highest median annual wage in the nation, at nearly $98,600, adjusted for the cost of living. The state’s officers, deputies and troopers also see the third-highest median income growth rate.

Illinois ranks in the top 10 in police protection, a category that includes whether a state has red-flag laws, how much it spends on officer protection and the frequency at which officers are assaulted or killed in the line of duty.

Where is Illinois trailing? We’re 21st when it comes to violent crime rates and 50th in solving homicide cases, according to the report.

For the full report, including an explanation of the methodology, visit

Update on case

The Elburn man accused of child pornography crimes in a federal case will have another hearing Monday about whether he should go free while awaiting trial.

Adam Stafford King has been in custody since his arrest in March. Federal prosecutors allege an undercover agent engaged in text conversations with King in which the Elburn man mentioned looking forward to abusing his child, due to be born to a surrogate the next month.

King says a judge erred in March when she ruled that it would be impossible to prevent him from accessing the internet if he was released, given the ubiquity of Wi-Fi service, including that of neighbors or businesses. And he argues that the prosecution has not proven, by clear and convincing evidence, how he would obtain an internet-capable device if he is on home confinement, being monitored by his parents and in-laws, and wouldn’t have internet access since his husband canceled the account.

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