6 People Killed, 63 Wounded Over Violent 4th of July Holiday in Chicago

(Tribune) At least six people were killed and 63 others were wounded by gun violence in Chicago over the long Fourth of July weekend — fewer than other times in recent years when the holiday weekend spanned four days.

Nearly half of the victims were shot over 18 hours from about noon Thursday to dawn Friday; at least 31 people were shot and three of them were killed.

After a relatively quiet Friday, when fewer than 10 people were shot from morning until Saturday afternoon, another burst hit on the third night of the holiday weekend: At least 18 people were shot over eight hours from Saturday night to early Sunday morning.

The oldest person shot over the weekend was a 65-year-old man wounded in a double shooting in Austin. The youngest was a 14-year-old girl shot in Calumet Heights on the South Side.

A dozen of those hit by gunfire over the weekend were women, two of them fatally. Akeelah Addison, 22, was gunned down Friday, a week after her aunt Felon Smith was fatally struck by a train while retrieving her cellphone at a CTA Red Line stop.

them died. In 2014, when the Fourth was on a Friday, at least 82 were shot, 14 fatally.

Ahead of this year’s holiday, Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Chicago police Superintendent Eddie Johnson announced a strategy that included ramping up cops on the streets by 1,500 and confiscating weapons from those with expired firearm owner’s identification cards.

People were shot from the West Pullman neighborhood on the Far South Side to Austin on the West Side. No shootings were recorded on the North Side, but on the Near North Side, gunfire erupted in the Old Town neighborhood in the middle of the afternoon Saturday. A handful of people were shot on the Northwest Side as well, in neighborhoods including Logan Square and Belmont Central.

The gunfire was mainly contained to the South and West sides, with the Englewood District seeing the greatest number of victims: 13. Two shootings there early Sunday each wounded four people:

• Three women and a man were standing on a sidewalk about 3:40 a.m. Sunday when someone in a black SUV opened fire on them in the 5600 block of South Paulina Street. The man, 31, was shot in the left leg and taken to University of Chicago Medical Center in critical condition. A 21-year-old woman was struck in the right foot and stabilized at St.

Bernard Hospital. Another woman, 32, was hit in the left leg and stabilized at Stroger Hospital. The third woman, 22, was taken to University of Chicago Medical Center with a gunshot wound in the back and stabilized there, police said.

After a flood of 911 calls, ambulances lined 56th Street next to the crime scene. One by one, paramedics carted four gurneys south on Paulina as a throng of residents stood on the street corner. Some neighbors lingered on stoops or on the sidewalk until the sun rose.

• A couple of hours earlier, three men and a 25-year-old woman were wounded by gunfire about 1:10 a.m. in the 600 block of West 61st Place, police said. One of the men, a 27-year-old, was in critical condition at University of Chicago Medical Center after being shot in the buttocks and armpit. A police spokesman said a weapon was recovered at the scene, but it was unclear whom it belonged to.

The mayor made an appearance at the Englewood District’s officer roll call late Friday, according to a tweet from Chicago police. Afterward, she briefly rode inside a marked squad car “to see first hand how 7th District officers and the residents of Englewood interact,” the tweet said.

• Officers responded to calls of gunfire about 2:10 a.m. Friday in the 1600 block of East 67th Street and found four people with gunshot wounds lying outside: an 18-year-old woman struck in the chest and arm, a 33-year-old man hit twice in the back, an 18-year-old man hit in the left leg and chest and a 26-year-old man struck in the leg.

The first three were taken to University of Chicago, while the fourth was taken to Stroger. Soon officers were notified about a fifth person, a 20-year-old woman who showed up at Stroger from the same shooting, police said. She suffered a gunshot wound to the ankle.

Kimberly Banks, 55, said she discovered her son narrowly avoided the bullets while walking with the 20-year-old woman, who was at their house earlier for a Fourth of July barbecue. After taking his shirt off and applying a makeshift tourniquet, he remains “a little shaken,” she said.

Banks herself said she was dismayed by the gun violence that surfaced just hours after she and other families were setting off fireworks as children played outside at Jackson Park across the street.

“After 11 o’clock I was like, ‘Let’s go. Something’s going to happen,’ ” Banks said. “And sure enough … they shooting innocent people.”

• About 1 a.m. Sunday, a 14-year-old girl was sitting in a parked car in the 9100 block of South Luella Avenue when a gunman opened fire in an alley. A bullet struck her left foot, and a relative drove her to Trinity Hospital, where her condition was stabilized, police said.

After speaking with a detective outside the emergency room, the girl’s father said they remained uncertain about the circumstances of the shooting. A police spokesman said Sunday evening that the motive was unclear.

• A bogus report of gunfire at the Navy Pier fireworks Thursday night sparked a “stampede” that injured more than a dozen people. The scare came after a brawl the pier that left three people stabbed, two of them 14-year-old boys.

• Late Saturday, a 27-year-old pregnant woman was in critical condition and a 26-year-old man was seriously hurt after they were both stabbedby a male during a fight on a sidewalk in the Loop. The knife attack occurred around 11:30 p.m. in the first block of East Washington Street — soon after a heavy police presence tapered off from earlier that night along Michigan Avenue and other main thoroughfares downtown.

Article Org: chicagotribune.com

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