Chicago Prepares For a Violent Summer

Summer traditionally is Chicago's most violent season. On students' last day of school, will this year follow suit?

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Friday marks the last day of school for Chicago Public Schools students.

    That's giving community leaders concerns about public safety. 

    A number of officials are speaking Friday about the potential for violence during Chicago's usually troublesome summer.

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    Thirty-three CPS students were killed during '01-'10 school year.

    The pastor from St. Sabina Church, Father Michael Pfleger, hosts a start-of-summer rally to remind kids to stay safe while the weather warms up. 

    The rally follows a week of multiple shootings and deaths, including three shot in the same West Humboldt Park block in three days. Overnight Thursday, a 17-year-old boy was killed in a drive-by and another 17 year old was injured in a separate shooting.

    It follows an announcement Sunday by Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Police Supt. Garry McCarthy to dispatch 150 more officers to dangerous areas. That same weekend, shootings killed seven and injured 10 in unrelated incidents.

    "I can pledge to you the support of the Chicago Police Department, because we're going to change the way we do business," McCarthy said at a Saturday press conference at King College Prep High School.

    But it might not be that easy.

    In 2010, Chicago caught national headlines for its particularly bloody summer. During one weekend in July, 52 people were shot, including a 1 year old. Then-Police superintendent Jody Weis said most of the violence came from gangs.

    Mayor Daley, Weis and Father Michael Pfleger last year held a teen violence rally at the end of last year's school year, declaring, "Enough is enough." As death numbers rose, Daley later that summer pledged $25 million to fight violence in schools.

    This year, Emanuel and McCarthy must deal with a new wave of pre-summer crime: multiple robberies and attacks for gangs of teens in Streeterville and along the lakefront.

    McCarthy says he has a plan to solve both the so-called mob attacks, with 33 arrests made in connection to the robberies.

    On Tuesday, a 15-year-old boy was robbed at gunpoint by a group of seven men and teens near the Ogilvie Transportation Center.