Cook County Board candidates share ideas on combating gun violence
The Democratic candidates for the Cook County Board's 17th District seat said they support measures to help law enforcement combat gun violence but have different ideas about which ones.
Former Orland Park Trustee Dan Calandriello and LaGrange Trustee Lou Gale are seeking their party's nomination in the June 28 primary. The seat currently is held by Republican Sean Morrison, who's facing a primary challenge from former Commissioner Liz Gorman.
Citing his experience as a former Cook County assistant state's attorney, Calandriello said he supports proactive policing as a way to get illegal firearms off the streets. As an example, he cited Orland Park, where officers have uncovered guns through routine policing like traffic stops for speeding.
"The sheriff's department needs the resources so that they can do that extra step, other than just playing defense," he said.
Calandriello said the county also should work with federal and state partners.
"Our issue is Indiana guns coming in, Wisconsin guns coming in, Iowa guns coming in," he said. "Until we have comprehensive reform, overall, we're going have this problem. So we need more hands on deck working together."
He said he would also like to give the sheriff's office better technology to track people on electronic home monitoring.
"Someone could be out of their home for about 72 hours before the sheriff will even know about it," he said.
Gale said a comprehensive violence protection program is needed to get at some of the root causes of gun violence, and those accused of gun crimes need to be prosecuted quickly.
He said the county also should look into safe storage laws and requirements for reporting gun thefts.
"(We need) a greater regulatory regime to make sure guns are staying in the hands of safe gun owners as opposed to just out there flooding the streets, which is part of what the issue is," he said.
Gale said electronic monitoring shouldn't be allowed for anyone accused of a violent offense.
"If you've got a violent offender ... (electronic monitoring) should be off the table, and they should be put in jail while they are awaiting trial," Gale said.
The 17th District includes parts of Des Plaines, Elk Grove Village, Bensenville, and Elmhurst.