The saga of Felony Franks’ proposed sign is drawing to a close. You know, that is unless the city decides it would like to lose its “authority to grant and regulate sign permits.” That order came from a federal court, which stated that the city didn’t “have a legal leg to stand on” for denying Felony Franks a sign solely based on moral reasons. For two-and-a-half years, the prison-themed hot dog stand along Western Avenue has been attempting to put up a sign. It has been “stalled” by Alderman Bob Fioretti, who claimed that the establishment’s logo — a hot dog dressed in black and white stripes with a ball and chain — sends a “bad message” to area kids.
To be fair, Fiorettie seemed genuinely passionate about the issue, pointing out that an 18-year-old high school student was killed less than 75 feet from the location in 2008. But Felony Franks’ owner, Jim Andrew, was equally as determined to get the sign up.
Andrew employees ex-convicts at the stand, and while everyone generally agrees that he is exploiting that fact for economic gain, a report last year by ChicagoStorytelling claims that the employees are actually happy to have jobs.