While some authorities declined to comment on the issue, others, like the Forest Preserve District of Will County, are taking action in the hopes of eliminating it. Tracy Chapman said, specifying sexual activity and drug use at some forest preserve locations.
In addition to three incidents of public indecency, one man also was charged with misdemeanor battery for grabbing one of the police officers, authorities said. Another man was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia for having a crack pipe with residual crack cocaine on it, reports said. Sixteen other men were ticketed for lewd conduct, which is an ordinance violation.
In each instance, the men cited made comments, gestures or invitations of a sexual nature to the undercover officers, Chapman said. All 21 men face mandatory court appearances. About two dozen people gathered at Daley Plaza in a show of solidarity for Alisha Walker, who received a year prison Chapman said the Will County forest preserve police will continue to crack down on illegal activity by conducting similar undercover stings throughout the spring and summer.
As recently as Wednesday, there was a steady trickle of men entering the Hammel Woods Route 59 Access location by themselves. Within a two-hour period that afternoon, there were six vehicles driven by men that entered the parking area alone. Although some drove around the lot and left, others parked and remained in their cars.
For example, Irina H. Tim Schweizer, a spokesman for the Illinois Department of Natural Resources, said conservation police "have not reported any recent incidents," of lewd or sexual conduct.
However, that may have been attributed to the winter weather. He called it an "occasional problem," and encouraged anyone who sees any manner of suspicious activity to call the toll-free hotline, The Illinois Conservation Police, an arm of the Department of Natural Resources, publishes a bi-weekly report of some events where law enforcement was involved. According to reports posted on www.
There were other incidents of illegal conduct included in the reports. A father fishing with his two children said that kind of behavior in a public place "was just not right. After the Southtown asked her about the recent citations, she telephoned the boys and told them to return to the car. As she was talking, another man drove up alone in his car, waited without getting out, then left abruptly. All men cited in the forest preserve undercover operation are scheduled to appear in Will County court on April Erin Gallagher is a freelance reporter for the Daily Southtown.