The power was out, the streets were black, business and residential alarms
were dead in the water.
But in the wake of Wednesday’s tornado, there were no reports of looting or
burglary in the Town of Chesterton.
Det. Lt. Dave Cincoski of the Chesterton Police Department is attributing
the crime-free night to a civic-minded citizenry more interested in helping
neighbors than victimizing them.
But it might have something to do as well with a strong police presence in
the hours after the tornado. Beginning around 7:30 p.m. the CPD mustered at
least 10 officers and three reserve officers, a total of 13 when normally
only three to four patrol officers are scheduled per shift.
In addition, another 12 officers from other agencies responded at various
times to provide assistance: Ogden Dunes Town Marshall Jim Reeder--himself a
Chesterton resident--at least two officers with the Porter County Sheriff’s
Police, a DNR conservation officer, five troopers with the Indiana State
Police, and three officers with the Porter Police Department.
“A lot of those officers were dedicated to crime deterrence in the
commercial and business areas of Chesterton,” Cincoski said. But others were
tasked to the house-to-house canvas in the--miraculously--fruitless search
for casualties, along with Boy Scouts and members of the Civil Air Patrol.
Still others were tasked to traffic control.
Cincoski had high praise today for Chesterton residents. “The fact that
there was no looting in the dark and the confusion after the tornado is
evidence of the honesty and civic-mindedness of our community’s citizens,”
Reeder, on the other hand, had high praise for the CPD.” I was very
impressed by Chesterton Police,” he said. “They were jumping right in, they
were in it, they were all out and all over.”