News in Evanston in May was mostly a chronicle of the COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on the city’s residents punctuated by the death of one of the community’s best known citizens from the disease. But a protest over police violence and an outbreak of looting broke through as the month was ending.
Here’s a rundown of some of the most impactful stories from the month based on their readership. (Several of the daily disease updates have been trimmed from this list to reduce repetition.)
- Massive looting incident at Best Buy — May 31 — Evanston Police say a large crew of looters invaded the Best Buy at 2301 Howard St. around 7 o’clock this evening.
- Hecky Powell dies of COVID-19 — May 22 — Long-time Evanston restaurant owner and community activist Hecky Powell died this morning of complications of COVID-19.
- Northwestern Medicine to replace B&N downtown — May 1 — The Barnes & Noble bookstore in Sherman Plaza downtown has closed, and will be replaced by new offices for Northwestern Medicine.
- Record number of new COVID-19 cases in Evanston — May 1 — Evanston reported its highest daily count of COVID-19 cases today, with 19 new cases, bringing the city’s total to 357. The state also set a record, with 3,137 new cases for a total of 56,055. (The daily case count was even higher the next day and a few days later.)
- Man charged in shooting of woman on Howard — May 12 — Evanston police have arrested a 24-year-old Evanston man and charged him with aggravated battery in connection with the shooting of a 28-year-old Evanston woman last month on Howard Street.
- Crowd stretches for blocks in black lives march — May 31 — A crowd of people protesting police violence stretched for blocks as they marched through Evanston this afternoon.
- Evanston care homes suffer 21 COVID-19 deaths — May 16 — The state health department and county medical examiner now report a total of 21 deaths linked to Evanston long term care homes, up from 15 a week ago. (And the toll rose the following week. There’d been more than 100 cases as early as May 4.)
- Man dies in jump from Sherman Plazaa garage — May 12 — A 53-year-old man died Monday evening when he jumped from an upper floor of the Sherman Plaza parking garage in Evanston.
- Evanston emergency declaration up for extension — May 10 — Hours before it would otherwise expire, Evanston aldermen are scheduled to vote Monday night on a resolution that would extend the city’s COVID-19 state of emergency declaration through June 8.
- Stores and restaurants reopen — sort of — May 29 — As the state entered Phase 3 of the governor’s Restore Illinois plan today, for many Evanston merchants it was finally time to “re-OPEN the store Illinois.”