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Chicago increases police patrols along lakefront amid beach safety concerns

Chicago Police increase patrols along lakefront
Chicago Police increase patrols along lakefront 01:48

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Chicago city leaders say they are increasing police and safety patrols along the lakefront since crowds have flocked to the shoreline with the stunning weather. 

CBS 2 saw a few people turned away because they were trying to bring in alcohol. It's one result of the increased police presence as the city tries to prevent more significant problems. 

That includes incidents like one caught on video showing a group of men kicking and punching the back passenger window of an SUV. The driver ran into an 18-year-old woman as they tried to leave at North Avenue Beach. 

On Saturday, police could be seen posted around several spots at the same beach and checking bags at the entrance. 

Some out-of-state visitors say they are surprised by the protocols, but some regulars say they don't think this is any more than they have seen in previous years. 

"I am actually surprised," said Jaylen Scott, visiting from Waco, Texas. "I never had to experience this at a beach, but I just got it. Follow the protocol, so I don't get in trouble or nothing." 

"I was honestly, honestly surprised because I thought people were going to ask to look in my bag, but I was not asked," said Catherine Grabowy of Arlington Heights. 

"I think when we first got here, we did not see much police around," said Macy Goodman, who lives in River North. 

"This time not as much," said Esho Esho, of Chicago. "But I think it's like towards the summertime they're going to be out here more. That's what I'm saying. It's still May." 

The beaches do not officially reopen until Friday when the park district starts staffing lifeguards. 

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