Six children were shot in just 12 hours in Chicago, and one — a four-year-old boy visiting relatives — was killed over a bloody holiday weekend in Chicago that saw nearly 70 people become shooting victims.
Chicago’s local ABC affiliate reported Tuesday that at “least 63 people have been shot, six fatally, across Chicago since Friday evening, including several children.” Chicago police later confirmed that six children were shot.
“On Friday evening, a 4-year-old boy was shot in Woodlawn on the South Side,” ABC Chicago added. “The child was inside a home about 9 p.m. Friday in the 6500-block of South Ellis Avenue when bullets tore through the front window, striking him twice in the head, Chicago police said.”
The child was taken to a local hospital where he later died. His mother told the Chicago Tribune that neighbors are keeping tight-lipped about the shooting and have refused to speak to the police.
“The police don’t know anything yet because no one is talking. No one is coming forward,” the boy’s mother said. “People aren’t answering their doors, and the people that are answering their doors are saying they don’t know anything. Somebody in Chicago knows something.”
“He was the second 4-year-old shot in Chicago in a week, and the second 4-year-old killed in the city this year,” the Chicago Sun-Times noted.
Over the weekend, 68 people were shot in Chicago and six died, continuing an upward trend in violence in the city. Chicago’s mayor Lori Lightfoot, who recently announced a slate of initiatives aimed at curbing illegal gun sales inside Chicago city limits, pinned the blame on individuals who refused to cooperate with law enforcement.
“The people in the neighborhoods who are doing the shooting, they are known to people in the neighborhoods,” she said at a press conference Tuesday morning. “I understand the fear that’s out there but I’m just calling upon people in these neighborhoods — particularly when we think about the number of children who have been shot — you’ve got to have your faith overcome your fear. You’ve got to step up.”
Lightfoot also said her office would announce further “gun violence” abatement measures but would not give details. The Biden administration committed, earlier in the summer, to send a task force to Chicago, as well as to other major cities, in order to combat illegal gun trafficking, but it is not clear what effect such programs might have. The problem of illegal gun trafficking predates the current streak of violence.
“In announcing crime statistics in Chicago for the month of August, police officials described ‘a challenging time across the city,’ with 78 murders, or 22% more, for the month compared to August 2020. The city saw a 3% uptick in murders year-to-date compared to the past year,” Fox News reported on Monday. “And while shootings had decreased from 380 in August 2020 to 372 in August 2021, the number of shooting victims was up by three last month compared to the same month last year.”
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