Chicagoans walking around the Loop might catch a free show when they pass the Metropolitan Correctional Center. If you are walking with children, though, watch out: these shows may not be G-rated.
Across the street, women will stand on the top floor of the parking garage and perform shows for the detainees. The jailhouse audience flickers the lights on and off to show their appreciation. Many of the women are girlfriends or partners of the detainees, and one source said that the detainees themselves arrange the shows to demonstrate their power in jail.
The first question that comes to mind is: Why hasn’t the jail done anything about this? Public indecency, which includes a “lewd exposure of the body” is still a crime in Illinois.
Well, the parking garage is private property and is not owned or controlled by Metropolitan Correctional Center. So, even though the federal Bureau of Prisons is well aware of what is going on, prison authorities cannot do anything beyond reporting the shows to the parking garage owners. And, according to attorneys who work in the nearby Monadnock Building, this has been going on for decades.
To be fair, not all of the shows include nudity or dancing. On some occasions, family and friends of detainees can be seen holding up messages and signs, waving and cheering them on.
Most people opt to visit or send food and other gifts to loved ones in jail, so arranging strip shows on top of garage buildings is unconventional. At LauraLaw, we’d prefer you choose the former but if you find yourself in legal trouble, contact us at LauraLaw to discuss your options.