Authorities in Chicago say more than 80 people were shot, including 14 fatally, over the Fourth of July weekend. Several children were counted among the victims.
Officials told ABC7 and other news outlets that two people were killed and at least four were wounded, including a 12-year-old girl and a 13-year-old boy, during a mass shooting at Washington Park in Chicago’s South Side district early on July 5.
Around the same time, in another South Side neighborhood, a shooting left a 6-year-old girl and a woman injured, officials said.
Early on July 5, two Chicago officers were shot while they attempted to disperse crowds in South Austin, officials told CBS Chicago.
Police Superintendent David Brown said they were deployed to the 100 block of North Long Street around 1:30 a.m., where they heard shots and were hit by gunfire. Both officers are expected to recover, he said.
Authorities told the Chicago Sun-Times that in all, 88 people were shot and 14 killed since July 2. In one instance, a University of Chicago student was shot and killed on July 4 while riding on a Green Line train in Washington Park, officials told the paper.
Among the injured in the shootings are a 5-year-old girl, a 6-year-old girl, an 11-year-old boy, and a 12-year-old girl, the reports said.
Some 32 people were shot in Chicago on July 1, officials told news outlets last week.
So far in 2021, there have been more than 1,892 shootings in Chicago, the Sun-Times noted. That represents a 12 percent year-over-year increase. About 330 homicides have been reported in the first six months of 2021, the paper reported.
Before the Fourth of July weekend, which has historically been a violent period of time in Chicago, aldermen sought a plan from the Chicago Police Department and its superintendent for how they would keep the city safe.
Amid the spike in shootings and homicides, Brown told the aldermen last week that the cause is, in part, due to “too much advocacy for violent offenders and too little consequences for their behavior in the courts.”
When asked about a study from Loyola University suggesting that pretrial releases didn’t impact crime after Cook County implemented a bail reform law in 2017, Brown suggested that the data was flawed.
“I would ask those researchers to move over to the South and West Side of Chicago and come back with their conclusions. Just one night,” Brown said, referring to the most violent areas of the city.
“When you say ‘a few people’ recommitted crimes [while out on electronic monitoring], to the victims, that’s everything.
“‘A few people’ are problematic in our neighborhood. ‘A few people’ committed a murder-suicide this month. ‘A few people’ stabbed someone to death this month. That ‘few people,’ for the victims, is everything.”