Gun assault rates for Chicago kids doubled, suspects taken into custody in fatal shooting of off-duty officer and more in your Chicago news roundup

Today’s update is about an eight-minute read that will brief you on the day’s biggest stories.

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A small memorial last October outside the home where Akeem Briscoe, 7, was shot to death in the 2600 block of West Potomac Avenue in Humboldt Park. Rates of child shootings have risen during the COVID-19 pandemic, especially among Black children, according a new study.

Tyler Pasciak LaRiviere/Sun-Times file

Good afternoon. Here’s the latest news you need to know in Chicago. It’s about an eight-minute read that will brief you on today’s biggest stories.

— Matt Moore (@MattKenMoore)

Weather 🌧️

Expect more showers this afternoon with a high near 55 degrees. Tonight — a chance of thunderstorms and a low near 49 degrees. Tomorrow will be mostly sunny with a high near 69 degrees.

Top story

Gun assault rates for kids doubled in Chicago, 3 other big cities during COVID pandemic, even worse for Black children, study finds

Rates of gun assaults on children roughly doubled during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to a study that looked at gun deaths and injuries in Chicago and three other major cities.

Black children were the most frequent victims.

The analysis led by Boston University’s Jonathan Jay, who studies urban health, included a review of gun assaults between mid-March 2020 and December 2021 in Chicago, Philadelphia, Los Angeles and New York.

It found that Black children were 100 times as likely as white children to be victims of fatal and nonfatal shootings. Pre-pandemic, they were 27 times as likely. The researchers excluded accidental shootings and incidents of self-harm.

Jay said his team looked at the rates to understand whether some children are at higher risk than others.

“We knew that children of color, even before the pandemic, were more likely than non-Hispanic white children to be shot, and we also knew that child gun victimization seemed to be increasing during the pandemic,” Jay said. “But no one had looked at how racial disparities in child victimization might have been changing.”

The influences they’re considering include “stress associated with job losses, school closings, loss of access to certain kinds of services that closed down,” he said. “Also, really visible police violence, especially against people of color. Loss of loved ones and family members to COVID-19 virus.”

More on the study’s findings from WHYY’s Sammy Caiola.

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A bright one ✨

Listen, don’t yell, and dance now and again — advice from a Forest View couple married 75 years

One measure of Tony and Lorraine Faikus’ life together is the hillock of flowers on their coffee table to celebrate their marriage.

Another is the two children they raised, the five grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren they lived to see. There are other, more poignant measures — the number of hours that pass while she’s out grocery shopping and he’s left fretting and “lonesome” at home. Or the number of their friends who have died in recent years. Or even the number of days, months or years they might still have left together.

Today, they’re marking 75 mostly blissful years of marriage. That’s right, 75 years. He is 99. She is 95. Last week, they were planning for a big party to celebrate at a banquet Hall in McCook. All of the couple’s children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren were set to be there — as well as a bridesmaid from their wedding in 1948.


Tony and Lorraine Faikus, 99 and 95 years old, respectively, who are celebrating 75 years of marriage today, dance together to an old Bohemian love song in their living room in their suburban Forest View home last week.

Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

“But we’ve known each other for 77,” says a still-trim Tony Faikus, his white hair close-cropped, his blue eyes alert. Beside him on the sofa in their Forest View home during a recent interview sat Lorraine Faikus, her hair newly coiffed, a string of pearls resting against a blue-and-white blouse.

Listening to each other and not yelling are part of the recipe for success in marriage, Tony said.

A sprinkle of dancing helps. Tony and Lorraine loved to do the jitterbug and the polka in their younger years. And they still dance. Every Sunday, after breakfast, they put on a CD of old Bohemian love songs — heavy on the brass and the accordion.

More with Tony and Lorraine Faiku from our Stefano Esposito.

From the press box ⚽🏈⚾️🏀

Your daily question☕

It’s well known that our city has plenty of places to explore, so we want to know — what is your most recent Chicago discovery?

Email us (please include your first and last name) and we might include your answer in the next Afternoon Edition.

On Friday, we asked you: How are you feeling about the coronation of King Charles III? Do you plan to watch it?

Here’s some of what you said...

“No, I do not plan to watch the coronation. It may sound trite, but the revolutionary generation fought a war so that we today can and should scorn these royals. Every American should feel an aversion verging on disgust at the idea of monarchy — in all its guises. That revulsion ensures ‘that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.’” — Henry W.

“I don’t intend to watch it. I just can’t seem to see him as a king at all — he is more like a lord of the estate not King of England.” — Wanda Shafer

“The British monarchy is of course a relic and modern farce, but as a history buff, I know it has not happened in 70 years and has been happening for 1000 years. Many people never live to see one. An historic moment is an historic moment, plus LONDON! The DVR is set.” — Kirk M.

“I will absolutely be watching the coronation. Why? Because the first thing I remember watching on television was the coronation of Queen Elizabeth. I was 10 years old and it was on a 12-inch black and white television. It is pretty cool to watch such an event 70 years apart.” — Dolores Avram

“My husband and I will be watching the Coronation while enjoying a ‘Full English’ — breakfast for those who don’t know — at the Globe Pub. We are both British-born. Despite what I constantly hear, I believe the Monarchy is one of the UK’s assets. All Americans should read ‘The Last King of America’ which shows that King George III was actually progressive. King Charles will be a good King and he deserves to have his Queen by his side.” — Jackie B.

“I am not the least bit interested in the coronation of King Charles. Our country has 247 years of independence called the Revolutionary War from Great Britain. Why should our country care about a monarchy that has nothing to do with us? What a waste of time and money by the British. They should forego their monarchy as well!” — Tom Horstmann

“I’m planning to TiVo it so I can fast forward through the tedious parts. Another reason is so I don’t have to start the day at 4 a.m. That’s just whack!” — Susan Danzig

“If he announces he’ll give back the billion or so pounds that he has earned as a result of his monarchy’s plundering of its citizens and the rest of the world, I’ll tune in. Otherwise, I’ll pass.” — Jim Maguire

“I will definitely watch the coronation, mostly because of the music — and Justin Welby’s preaching. I am an Episcopalian, a choir member and love our music. There will be so many new pieces commissioned just for this event. I am not a Camilla fan and will turn away when she is feted. Nor am I a fan of all the over-the-top, expensive pomp and circumstance.” — Carolyn Dillon

Thanks for reading the Chicago Sun-Times Afternoon Edition. Got a story you think we missed? Email us here.

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