Chicago Crime: The 10 Most-Read Stories of 2012 (Part I of II)

William Peacock, Esq.

The year 2012 was a bad one for Chicago, punctuated by the highest murder rate in the city’s history, a plague of gang violence, and on the brightest days, oddball criminals that we couldn’t help but laugh at.

Though we covered the highlights and the lowlifes of Chicago’s criminal justice system, you, our readers, flocked mostly towards the funnier posts. We can’t blame you. Like we said, last year was a rough one.

Here are the Top 10 Chicago crime stories of 2012:

1. Man Loses Lawsuit, Hires Someone to Kill Plaintiff

What’s the most important lesson of how to hire a hitman? Don’t skimp on the murderer. Daniel Dvorkin did exactly that by attempting to employ hired a hired gun for $50,000 down and another $50,000 upon completion. That may sound like a lot, but the purpose of the kill was to avoid paying an $8.2 million verdict. Dvorkin probably would’ve spent more than $100,000 on gas for the private plane he planned to use to transport the (spoiler alert) FBI agent posing as a killer.

2. Ex-UIC Soccer Player, Volunteer Coach Charged with Brutal Rape

Michael Griffin, a former player and volunteer coach for UIC, was accused of and arrested for a brutal assault on a woman he met at a bar. He was accused of raping her multiple times and choking her until she lost consciousness. Though he was not yet convicted, the allegations alone caused him to lose his coaching positions with the university and Chicago United Futbol Club’s youth team.

3. Is Rapper Chief Keef’s Instagram Sex Pic Child Porn?

Keith Cozart, better known as up-and-coming rapper Chief Keef, couldn’t keep himself off of the computer, or out of the headlines, in September of last year. First, he mocked his rival’s murder on Twitter. Shortly thereafter, he posted a picture of a woman performing fellatio on him to the picture-sharing service Instagram. Privacy issues aside, what’s the big deal? Cozart is underage. He essentially posted child porn of himself. We warned readers that same mistake could happen to a number of teenagers who engage in the practice of “sexting.”

4. Chicago Surfer Arrested for Ripping Lake Michigan

Bummer dude. Local surfer Rex Flodstrom (perfect surfer name, right?) was arrested and had his surfboard confiscated after he surfed the off-limits Lake Michigan. Though he was only charged with breaching the peace, and though that is the lowest form of crime anyone can be charged with, he still faced a heavy fine and of course, the loss of his beloved board.

5. Shorty Wanna Be a Thug: Nine Year Old Charged With Murder

A pre-teen suspect was arrested for the brutal crime of beating a 14-month-old baby to death. We asked (and answered) if that was a new record, explored his possible fate, and discussed the policy argument for reduced punishment for juvenile offenders.

Is that it? Not quite. We love cliffhangers. The rest of the Top 10 will appear later this week.

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Chicago Crime: The 10 Most-Read Stories of 2012 (Part I of II)