Crown Point mayor wants apology from TV show
Sophia Bush as Erin Lindsay in "Chicago P.D." –
Crown Point Mayor David Uran says the city and its residents deserve an apology after the city was depicted as a racist community on the May 10 episode of the NBC drama "Chicago P.D."’
"It was just a very bizarre episode, I thought," Uran said. "Obviously the story line isn’t true. We have never had a case like that here in Crown Point. Just the way it engaged the image of our city was a little disturbing."
The mayor, who does not watch the show, said he had a lot of people contact him after the episode aired and was shocked after viewing it.
He said the way show crossed a fictional storyline with a factual place gave the impression the incident is something that occurred or could occur in the city.
"Even if the incident was real and it was 30 to 40 years ago, they made it sound like it was happening yesterday. Everything felt like it was within the realm of possibility that it just took place. We know it’s not true. Other places in our viewing area may believe it," Uran said.
As mayor, he said he is always trying to promote inclusiveness in the community to attract people to live, work and play in Crown Point. He said he has reached out to NBC through different emails and is demanding an apology for the city and its residents.
In the episode, "Army of One," a black man is killed after he was released from jail for a rape that occurred while he was a star high school athlete dating a white girl. About nine minutes into the episode, police went to interview the man’s aunt. She responded there was no rape, the pair were boyfriend and girlfriend. "They were just kids. They put him in jail for having relations…Because she was white and that don’t fly in Crown Point, Ind.," she says in the episode.
Investigators in the episode then went to Crown Point to interview the young woman who was depicted as living in a rundown trailer park. Police went on to find her current boyfriend in a dive bar.
Uran said the city was unfairly depicted, an image that could make an impression on the millions of viewers who many have never visited the city.
"We work hard everyday. When I say we, it’s the people who live here and invest their dollars here. We have low crime rates. People maintain their properties. It is not the way hey portrayed the city. All they had to do is change the name," Uran said.
A publicist for "Chicago P.D.," whose contact information was provided by NBC Universal in New York, did not return a phone call requesting a comment.
Crown Point’s population is predominantly white. Based on the 2010 U.S. Census, 82 8 percent of the 27,837 residents at the time were white, 8.1 percent were Latino or Hispanic and 6.3 percent were African-American with a variety of ethnicities making up the last 2.8 percent.
Uran has been joined in his call for an apology by the Rev. Mark Wilkens of First United Methodist Church in Crown Point, and Speros Batistatos, president and CEO of the South Shore Convention and Visitors Authority.
Wilkens, who is also chaplain for the city’s police department, said he was surprised by the depiction of the city that he said he knows to be inaccurate.
"I think they were really heavy-handed and condescending toward our city. I think they took the easy way out in terms of writing," Wilkens said.
Batistatos said Uran, the city and the citizens of Crown Point are owed an apology and hat apology should take place on a downtown sidewalk where the producers and writers of the show can see what a beautiful city it is.
Like Uran, Batistatos questioned why a real community was named in a fictional show about a fictional incident instead of a fictional community.
"Why do that unless you are trying to perpetuation a stereotype?" he asked.
Carrie Napoleon is a freelance reporter for the Post-Tribune.