Oak Park’s police department received between 350 and 400 calls reporting excessively loud music in neighborhoods across the village starting late Thursday night and into the early hours of Friday. Callers described the noise as “a drumming bass sound” that awakened them from their slumber and prevented them from falling back asleep.
The calls started flooding in at 11:55 p.m., April 27, finally slowing down about two hours later. Calls for the same complaint ranged from as far north as the 900 block of North Ridgeland and as far south as the area of Jackson Boulevard and Wesley Avenue, according to Oak Park spokesperson Dan Yopchick. It is unclear whether this was a coordinated effort carried out by people in multiple cars, but Yopchick said the police were seeking the source of the disturbance in multiple locations.
Oak Park police actively investigated the source of the nuisance with multiple officers responding to the calls, but the phenomenon may not have been unique to Oak Park. The West Suburban Consolidated Dispatch Center reported the Chicago Police Department also received numerous calls reporting similar noise complaints along Augusta Boulevard in Chicago. Wednesday Journal has reached out to Chicago police for comment.
An Oak Park resident who wished to remain anonymous told Wednesday Journal he attempted to find the source himself, after he wasn’t able to go back to sleep. He left his home in the 100 block of North Taylor Avenue around 12:30 a.m. and drove east on Lake Street past Central Avenue in Austin, where he said the music was getting much louder. A police officer was parked at the light in front of him.
“We both drove to that dead-end area a couple blocks east of Central where you can go right under the train viaduct, but you can’t take a left there,” said the resident.
The music seemed to be coming out of a nearby Chicago park, according to the resident. The volume of the noise could not be ignored, even from the inside of his car.
“At the risk of overstating, it was almost as if my car windows were rattling at that point,” he said.
After the officer moved slowly past the no entry sign, the resident said he moved on, turning right under the viaduct and then headed further east. It was then he heard the music stop.
“I headed north to Chicago Avenue and then back west toward Oak Park where it seemed like it started back up again but further away,” he said.
On his way back home, the resident said he ran into another officer outside of One Lake Brewing, 1 Lake St. The officer, according to the resident, “was stumped.”
“He thought he found it coming out of a Hummer and stopped it, but as he was speaking with the driver it started again further away,” the resident said.
When the resident arrived home at about 1 a.m., he said he could still hear the music but fainter.