Another bad weekend in Chicago with 62 people shot including a 13-year-old girl. Incredibly, both of Chicago’s major papers are noting that this weekend’s violence is an improvement over the past month:
There were 62 people shot, three of them fatally, in Chicago from Friday afternoon to Monday morning, according to Chicago police.
The weekend wasn’t as deadly as last weekend, when 71 were shot, 12 fatally, according to data kept by the Tribune, and it didn’t have as many shootings as any of the weekends in the last month…
The youngest person shot over this weekend was a 13-year-old girl who was shot in the leg while she was in an alley around 2 p.m. Saturday in the 3000 block of West Harrison Street in the Lawndale neighborhood on the West Side, police said.
The Tribune notes that no one has been arrested in any of the homicide cases. Here’s the Chicago Sun Times with the good news: “The numbers are the lowest the city has seen in over a month, when 33 people were shot and two killed between 5 p.m. June 12 and 5 a.m. June 15.” It doesn’t sound that good but police believe the deployment of two new teams of officers is starting to help dampen the violence.
President Trump spoke about the violence in Chicago last week, citing the surge in shootings through last weekend:
"Yesterday alone, 23 people were shot in Chicago, including at least 15 who were shot in a merciless onslaught of gunfire outside of a funeral home."
Behind every spree of violence are countless more family members, friends, and loved ones left behind. pic.twitter.com/I8mu6BWZpm
— The White House 45 Archived (@WhiteHouse45) July 23, 2020
As Ed pointed out last week, President Trump eventually called the mayor of Chicago and there seemed to be some agreement about his plan to send police to the city to help local officers deal with the gang violence. Reuters spoke to people in Chicago about how they felt about the deployment and noticed in interesting divide. Mostly well-off people living in parts of the city untouched by the violence are firmly against it while those living in the neighborhoods where children are being shot were much more open to it:
Eight of 10 people Reuters interviewed in wealthier and safer areas on Chicago’s North Side opposed any form of intervention from Trump, saying federal officers could fan tensions in the city and would not address underlying issues such as unemployment…
The view was often more nuanced on the South and West Sides, where a much higher proportion of residents have experienced violent crime…
Junior Jaber, 28, recalled the day four years ago when his friend Paul Hamilton, then 47, was killed by a stray bullet while walking his dog in Ogden Park…
“They should clean it all up. Just do their job,” said the 28-year-old father of two as he sold sodas, lottery tickets and pints of liquor…
Some residents of East Garfield Park, a poor neighborhood on Chicago’s West Side, support federal intervention after gang shootings hit unintended targets, said Damien Morris, director of violence prevention initiatives for local nonprofit Breakthrough.
“When you have women and kids getting shot – innocent bystanders – you have residents that feel like something needs to happen,” Morris said.
We’ll just have to wait until next weekend to see if the new police units and the federal assistance are making a difference. Finally, here’s a clip from the Washington Post suggesting Chicago is “a city on the edge.”