The first month of 2016 saw a marked spike in Chicago gun violence compared to January 2015, with more than double the number of shootings and a 75 percent uptick in murders, according to statistics released by Chicago Police early Monday.
The city logged 292 gunshot victims in 242 separate shooting incidents from Jan. 1-31 this year, police said. That’s an increase from 136 victims in 119 shootings during the same period last year.
Police also reported 51 murders so far this year, a jump from 29 last January. Detectives have solved 14 murders this year, including eight from 2016 and six from prior years, police said.
In a statement from CPD spokesman Anthony Guglielmi, police called the increases “unacceptable” and attributed most of them to gang conflicts and retaliatory violence.
“The vast majority of incidents originated from petty disagreements that escalated into gun violence that tore apart families,” the statement said.
To combat the violence, police said more than 350 officers and 31 sergeants have been moved from foot patrols into squad vehicles to “increase their visibility,” and narcotics units have raided numerous “problematic” areas.
Other new measures touted by police to curb shootings include a partnership with the Cook County sheriff’s office on gang suppression and the closing of multiple “businesses that pose a public safety threat.”
“We will continue to work tirelessly on ways to stop violence, and restore accountability and trust in communities throughout the city,” the statement said.