Chicago-One News obtained this information via the Illinois Freedom of Information Act and the CPD website. The unit identifier list "radio table" is authorized in , CPD Special Order S03-01-04. This table is current as of 18 December 2019, and goes beyond the basic CPD Beat Map, showing every single beat and unit identifier in the Chicago Police Department. This listing is presented in numerical order by district, numerical order by district beat identifier, internal CPD unit identifier, and starts with the Bureau of Patrol before expanding into the rest of the department bureaus, etc.
This list was compiled because Chicago-One believes the residents of the city of Chicago should know who their police are and because city residents have a right to know how their local law enforcement agency works. This list furthers transparency and accountability in a few ways.
1. This list of CPD identifiers serves to ensure that CPD can't operate secret police units
2. This list ensures that city residents with concerns know which operational bureau, section, and unit each sworn member of CPD belongs to, and where citizens can direct their concerns, be they crime concerns or concerns about misconduct.
3. This list shows how CPD uses tax money, government grants, and loans to operate in the interests of public safety
4. This list will assist citizens, researchers, journalists, and other interested parties to conduct Freedom of Information Act Requests, given that CPD FOIA and other city agency FOIA officers need to know what records to search
5. This listing will assist those who obtain and read CPD FOIA records. CPD lists beat assignments in all reports. Those who read those FOIA files need to know what they're reading and how to read it.
This page has unit identifier listings not found in the popular Crime is Down radio identifier database
Understanding The Chicago Police Department Organizational Structure and Department Identifier Matrix
The Chicago Police Department consists of 22 districts, each with their own district level needs, and thus, each district has a unique unit identifier matrix. There is no such thing as a "universal" identifier matrix in CPD. Those days are long gone.
The Chicago Police Department is made up of bureaus, sections, divisions, and offices in a hierarchical top-down fashion. Each bureau, section, and division has a Chief, Deputy Chief, Executive Officer, Operations Commander, Captain, Lieutenant, and Sgt.
In the Chicago Police Department, the bureaus and sections break down into specialized units. For example, the Bureau of Patrol, Bureau of Detectives, and Gang Teams are broken down into district-level operations, regional teams that are assigned to one of five police "areas", or by region as North, Central, and South (regional is usually the case with gang teams) The McCarthy era of CPD Detective Area organization comes to an end in April 2020.
See the 8 CPD organizational charts below. These charts are current as of 10 May 2018. These charts should be read in conjunction with the CPD Beat Map AND unit identifier matrix. The below CPD organizational charts are expected to be out of date as of April 2020, and are being provided as a historical reference.
The CPD Organizational Chart and Detective Area Map below are current as of April 2020
CPD's 2020 Organizational Chart
CPD 2020 Detective Area Re-Organization Map
The Chicago Police Department has citywide teams of officers and Detectives who receive their assignments according to needs of the city at any given time. You'll see this breakdown in the unit identifier matrix.
District unit identifiers do not read the same as specialized regional or citywide units.
Beat assignments ending in the "R" designator remain, however they will eventually be marked as defunct in accordance with Chicago Police Department Order D20-01, "Unity of Command and Span of Control - Pilot Program"
How to Read District Units:
First two numbers in a 4 digit beat number assignment are the police district the unit belongs to. The third number is the sector number, and the fourth number is the beat number. Example: 1824 would read as 18th district, sector 2, beat 4.
This matrix at the district level does not read the same for tactical (plainclothes) units.
District tact units are two numbers ending in the 60 through 69 series. These are specialized District level teams based on priority missions such as Robbery, Burglary, Theft (RBT) which used to be known as Property Crimes. Mission specific teams of officers require authorization. Those identifiers are marked that way in the radio table.
Regional and Citywide units use a very similar beat identifier matrix scheme to the district tactical teams.
Regional and citywide unit identifiers are important and something to pay attention to because those identifiers, just like district identifiers, tell you about what those units do. Knowing what those units do is important to accurate reporting at every stage. Regional and citywide teams may not be lower ranking officers all the time, they might be Detectives, they might be a taskforce of some kind consisting of personnel with mixed titles and ranks.
Area Detectives are considered regional teams while also being part of the same overall citywide investigative network of Detectives reporting back to the CPD Chief of Detectives, who, in-turn, reports to the CPD Deputy Superintendent, Superintendent, and Mayor.
The CPD radio table in its entirety can be found below