Sen. Durbin responds to Kirk`s plan to stop street gangs - Chicago News and Weather | FOX 32 News

Sen. Durbin responds to Kirk`s plan to stop street gangs

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

Republican Senator Mark Kirk's call for federal law enforcers to "crush" Chicago's most violent gangsters won qualified support from Illinois' senior senator. Democrat Dick Durbin said he would join Kirk's push for the FBI and other agencies to do more against street gangs here—but there's a catch.

SEE: Kirk: Time for feds to take down Chicago street gangs

Senator Durbin said congress would resist appropriating the millions of extra tax dollars that might be needed for a broad attack on Chicago's gangs, with their estimated 100,000 members and supporters.

More ATF agents to trace the crime guns of Chicago gangsters; more DEA agents to uncover the sources and shipments of billions of dollars in illegal narcotics sold here each year; more IRS Treasury agents to follow where that money goes, much as they did against Al Capone 80 years ago. That's the vision Senator Mark Kirk spelled out in a one-on-one interview with Fox 32 News Thursday night.

After a joint appearance with him in Lake County Friday, Senator Dick Durbin told FOX 32 it will be hard to find the cash for Kirk's proposal.

"I think it's a good idea, if we can find it," Durbin says. "Remember, this is the part of the budget that's been hit the hardest. This is the non-defense discretionary spending."

Kirk pointed to the killing of honor student Hadiya Pendleton -- allegedly by two young men affiliated with the Gangsters Disciples -- as a reason to target that gang for destruction. It's a tactic Kirk discussed last month in a meeting with Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy.

On Friday, McCarthy said any additional federal resources would be welcome.

"We work with both the FBI, DEA, Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms on case work to take out gangs wholesale," McCarthy said. "We have a number of them that you've seen come to fruition in the recent past. We've a number of them that will be coming to fruition in the near future. I endorse the concept because that's something we've been doing since we got here, this group accountability issue."

McCarthy pointed to his first use of group accountability against the Northwest Side Maniac Latin Disciples, founded in the late 1960s by Albert "Hitler" Hernandez. In 2011, two little girls, 2 and 7 years old, were shot by members of the MLDs. McCarthy ordered police to arrest all known members for even the slightest offenses.

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