The two-flat at 6210 S. Fairfield Ave. in Chicago Lawn has been vacant since at least 2009. [Photo illustration by Michelle Kanaar]

Reclaiming the avenue

The housing recovery has yet to reach the 6200 block of South Fairfield Avenue in Chicago Lawn, but residents aren’t waiting for the market to bring back the street. They’re doing it themselves.

Courtroom sketch by Thomas Gianni

Charges dismissed

Thousands of defendants spend days, weeks and even months in Cook County’s criminal courts each year on low-level charges. Odds are that their cases will be dismissed.

The landlord of 4729 S. Langley Ave. collected more than $151,000 in rent subsidies during the six years before the building was boarded up. The building is one of thousands in Chicago that chronically failed inspections while occupied by voucher holders. Photo by Jonathan Gibby.

Cashed out

A growing number of private buildings subsidized by the Chicago Housing Authority are struggling to pass inspections. Landlords have collected millions while tenants are stuck with substandard conditions.

Jemarco Baldon, 17, heads back to the Honorable George N. Leighton Criminal Court Building at 26th Street and California Avenue for his fourth court appearance on a felony drug charge. Photo by Jonathan Gibby.

Minor misconduct

In 2010, the state began treating 17-year-olds facing misdemeanor charges as juveniles. But those charged with felonies are still sent to adult courts, and their number has since spiked.

Roughly 900 families lived in the Julia C. Lathrop Homes when Cynthia Scott moved in more than two decades ago. This year, four out of every five units sit empty. Photo by Marc Monaghan.

Home evasion

Thousands of public housing units in Chicago sit empty. Yet, the federal government continues to fund the CHA as if the units are occupied.