Chicago Violence

Top Cop Says Violence Spreading to New Areas As It Declines in Hardest-Hit Neighborhoods

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Pressed about a rash of weekend shootings in downtown Chicago, the city’s top cop acknowledged Monday that more shootings are occurring there even as they decline in neighborhoods that have long struggled with gun violence.

“We’ve seen some displacement issues,” Supt. David Brown told reporters Monday. “We’re starting to see increases in areas that we normally don’t have those increases.”

But Brown bristled at concentrating on downtown, where two people were killed and four others were wounded over a weekend that saw a total of 35 people shot across the city, nine of them fatally.

“I don’t want to separate downtown part from other neighborhoods,” he said. “The neighborhood is like any other neighborhood in the city.”

One of the shootings downtown prompted the cancellation of the Sunday evening performance of “Moulin Rouge! The Musical.” Other attacks occurred inside a Streeterville hotel and outside a popular bowling alley on the Near North Side.

The attacks happened in the 1st and 18th police districts that cover downtown. Both have seen sharp increases in shootings and other violent crime compared to last year.

Asked why that was so, Brown said more and more people are turning to guns to settle their disagreements. “People are resolving conflicts with guns more than they have in the past,” he said.

In one of the downtown attacks, a woman was killed and another woman was wounded outside the 10pin in the 300 block of North State Street when a man got out of a car during an argument and opened fire around 1 a.m. Saturday, according to Chief of Detective Brendan Deenihan.

A 26-year-old woman was shot in the chest and taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where she was pronounced dead, police said. A 31-year-old woman was shot in the left thigh and taken to the hospital in good condition, officials said.

Early Sunday, a teen was shot to death inside the Sonesta ES Suites at 201 E. Walton Pl. when people who were allowed in through a side door began arguing and shooting at each other, according to police.

Officers were called to the hotel around 5 a.m. and found an 18-year-old man wounded on the second floor. A gun was lying next to him, police said. He was was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital and pronounced dead.

Sunday evening two men were wounded near the Theater District in the Loop when the victims of a robbery opened fire at the thieves and hit them instead.

The robbery had occurred at a Taco Bell near the 100 block of North Wabash Street late Sunday afternoon, according to Deenihan. The victims began chasing the robbers and firing at them, he said.

Two men, 27 and 55 — described by Deenihan as “unintended targets” — were shot in an alley on the block.

The younger man suffered a gunshot wound to the right hand and the older man was struck in the head, police said. Both were taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital in fair condition, police said.

The Sunday evening performance of “Moulin Rouge! The Musical” at the Nederlander Theatre at 24 W. Randolph — about two blocks from the shooting — was canceled though the shooting wasn’t specifically given as the reason.

No arrests have been reported in any of the attacks.

Other weekend attacks

  • A man was shot to death while trying to rob two people Saturday afternoon in Calumet Heights on the South Side, police said. Two men were walking back to their car from a store at 3:45 p.m. in the 1500 block of East 95th Street when they began talking with the robber, identified as Xavier Johnson, police said. The pair entered their Volkswagen SUV and Johnson got into the backseat, struck one of them with a handgun and demanded their belongings, police said. One of the men pulled out a gun and shot Johnson, striking him in the forehead, left leg and chest, police said. He was pronounced dead at the University of Chicago Medical Center.
  • About 30 minutes later, Kier Carmichael-Smith was in the parking lot in the 1300 block of East 47th Street when a light-colored car pulled up and someone inside opened fire, Chicago police said. The 27-year-old suffered multiple gunshot wounds and fled into a restaurant, police said. He was transported to the University of Chicago and pronounced dead, police said.
  • Two men were shot, one fatally, in Albany Park on the Northwest Side. About 6:05 a.m. Saturday, officers found the two men, about 30 and 56, in the 3400 block of West Sunnyside Avenue, police said. The younger man was shot in the head and pronounced dead at the scene. The older man was shot in the leg and taken to Illinois Masonic Medical Center, in serious condition.
  • Later that day, a woman was fatally shot in Rosemoor on the Far South Side. The woman, Jazmine Jones, 28, was arguing with someone in the 500 block of East 106th Street about 10:45 p.m. Saturday when she was shot in her chest, police said. She was taken to the University of Chicago and pronounced dead.
  • A 69-year-old man was shot to death Friday evening in Austin on the West Side. He was in a home in the 300 block of South Kilpatrick Avenue when someone pulled out a gun and fired shots about 5:45 p.m., police said. He was struck in the chest and was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.
  • Hours later, a man was found fatally shot on the South Side. About 10:15 p.m., officers were responding to a ShotSpotter call in the 3400 block of South Indiana Avenue when they found the 40-year-old man with gunshot wounded to the chest, side and hand, police said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
  • A 19-year-old man was found fatally shot Sunday night in West Englewood on the South Side. Officers responded to a call of a person shot in the 1400 block of West 71st Place about 10:50 p.m. and found the man with gunshot wounds to his neck and body, police said. He was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.
  • A 16-year-old boy was shot and critically wounded Sunday morning in an Albany Park drive-by on the Northwest Side. The teen was a passenger in a car in the 4400 block of North Central Park Avenue when a dark SUV pulled up and someone inside opened fire about 2:20 a.m., striking him in the left side of the face, police said. He was taken to St. Francis Hospital in critical condition, officials said.

At least 21 others were wounded by gunfire in the city from 5 p.m. Friday to 5 a.m. Monday. Last weekend, at least seven people were killed and 36 others were wounded in Chicago.

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