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Rockford Scanner » Rockford Scanner™: Panhandlers Bothering Customers at Local Businesses… Local Police Said “There is Nothing We Can Do, Unless They Commit A Crime”…

Rockford Scanner™: Panhandlers Bothering Customers at Local Businesses… Local Police Said “There is Nothing We Can Do, Unless They Commit A Crime”…

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Our Opinion:
What Allegedly Happened

Based on the current information,
That has been provided to 

“Unless they commit a crime.
There is nothing we can do.”  

If you live in Winnebago County,
Odds are you have encountered panhandlers.

Many of the reports, say the panhandlers are aggressive.
And business owners are reporting that they are scaring off customers.

Local business owners have reported that they have called the police.
But the police no longer go after panhandlers.

Local officials warn citizens to STOP contributing to the panhandlers.
They say if you contribute, you are part of the problem.

Citizens that contribute, say they feel bad for the panhandler.
Or if their sign says “Need money for beer”
People think with the panhandler being honest,
they have better odds that to contribute.

Customers say that the panhandlers make reputable businesses,
lose their reputable image. Many have said that they are afraid of the panhandlers.
Some have said they contributed, out of fear.

And a lot of people said if they see a panhandler,
said they will not visit the business.  Until the panhandler goes away.

We have received many reports of panhandlers:
Being disorderly, jaywalking, hitting citizens, hitting vehicles,
spitting,  pissing and shitting in public at busy public intersections, offering sex, etc…

Again, businesses and citizens continue to call police to move the panhandlers.

However, many citizens have reported the local police threw their hands up and said,
“Our hands are tied. Unless they commit a crime. There is nothing we can do.”

Business owners just want the panhandlers to move along.
So, they can run their business, and not have customers scared away.

A simple search on our website, shows how this is an out of control situation
That has been ongoing for a long time.

And that local officials have no plan on fixing it anytime soon.
Other than to tell citizens to “not contribute.”

WTVO did a story on it saying:

“In Rockford, in July 2021, city officials claimed the majority of panhandlers have a place to live and are using panhandling as a way to supplement their incomes.

The City placed signs advising against giving money to panhandlers at major intersections which read: “Panhandling is not safe. Contribute to the solution – give to local charities.”

Aldermen said they were worried about the risk for panhandlers, as well as drivers, as people walk into the streets, between cars at stop lights, and on medians.

It has reportedly been a concern for a while, and city leaders said they worried that some panhandlers could become aggressive, or could cause injuries by creating car accidents.”

Donations of cash will not help solve the underlying reasons why someone panhandles and giving to panhandlers only encourages more panhandling. Additionally, not all panhandlers are homeless even though they may be in need of other critical services. Many of the stories panhandlers use to solicit money are not true.

As a business/property owner, you may ask a panhandler to leave private property (i.e. if they are in a parking lot or are not in the right-of-way). If they do not leave upon request, they are trespassing.



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Phone: 815-282-2600

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Phone: 815-966-2900

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