Spike in Expressway Shootings Prompts Warning for Drivers

Nine of those shootings were reported in the last month and three of them this week

The number of shootings on Chicago-area expressways has spiked so far this year.

Illinois State Police say more than 20 shootings have been reported in the first six months of the year, already surpassing the total number of expressway shootings from 2014.

Nine of those shootings were reported in the last month and three of them this week.

Most recently, three people were shot while driving on the Dan Ryan Expressway and one of the victims said the shooting was “completely random.”

“We were on the expressway and they pulled up next to us and started shooting,” he said. “We have no ties to these people, you know what I’m saying? It’s unnecessary. All the violence is unnecessary and it needs to be stopped.”

On Wednesday, a 31-year-old driver was shot at while driving on Lake Shore Drive. The driver was on Lake Shore Drive at the Oak Street curve around 1:30 a.m. when his vehicle was shot at by a man in a car next to him, authorities said. The victim said he did not know the shooter.

On Monday, another person was shot on the Dan Ryan Expressway. Police said a man in his 20s drove himself to Mercy Hospital after being shot on the expressway around 3 a.m. near 31st Street.

Earlier this month, a shooting was reported on the Eisenhower Expressway near Central Avenue. That same day, a shooting was also reported on Interstate 57 at Halsted Street.

Last month, a shooting on the Bishop Ford's Stony Island ramp had the outbound lanes of the freeway closed for several hours during morning rush hour.

Illinois State Police data showed that only 19 shootings were reported in 2014 and 16 were reported in 2013.

Officials have not said whether there is a suspected cause for the rise in expressway shootings.

Police had the following advice for drivers:

  • Call *99 if you see anything suspicious, feel threatened, or witness anything suspicious. Keep your car going. Don't pull over.
  • Only pull over for uniformed police
  • If your car breaks down, stay in the car.
  • If a suspicious car comes up on you, slow down or change lanes to provide distance between yourself and the other car.
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