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Johnson deploys more cops after shootings leave 1 dead, 16 wounded in just over 2 hours in North Lawndale

A shootout early Sunday at Douglas Park wounded 7 people, while a man was killed and 7 more people were shot a few hours later in the 1800 block of South Kildare Avenue. In between those attacks, 2 women were shot in the 1200 block of South Troy Street.

Police Supt. Eddie Johnson
Police Supt. Eddie Johnson
Sun-Times file photo

Hours after three shootings rocked the North Lawndale community early Sunday, Chicago Police Supt. Eddie Johnson and other officials announced plans to deploy additional officers in an effort to quell the violence and prevent retaliatory attacks.

In just over two hours, the shootings left a man dead and 16 other people hurt, police said. They all happened in the Ogden police district.

Flanked by a few dozen uniformed officers in Douglas Park, where one of the shootings injured seven people, Johnson addressed the spate of gun violence in the district and offered a response to the weekend’s mass shootings in Ohio and Texas.

“I want to first convey my condolences to the people of Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, and most certainly the citizens of this city who’ve been affected by just a tragic level of violence within a society that’s become immune to these types of shootings,” Johnson said.

Gilberto Calderon, an Ogden District captain, said officers are now being deployed where retaliatory shootings may happen. Police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi said the bolstered deployment also includes plans to add 50 additional officers in the district and three more gang investigation teams.

Meanwhile, Johnson said U.S. Attorney John Lausch offered additional assistance from the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms and the Department of Justice.

Gunfire first erupted about 1:20 a.m. Sunday at Douglas Park when the occupants of a black Chevrolet Camaro started shooting at a group of people in the 2900 block of West Roosevelt Road, police said. Johnson said a gun battle ensued when four or five people from the crowd fired back at the car.

Around 75 spent shell casings were recovered at the scene, police said.

Seven people, including four men and three women between the ages of 19 and 25, were struck by gunfire and taken to hospitals, according to police. A 21-year-old man was listed in critical condition at Mount Sinai Hospital, while the others were stabilized.

Two women, ages 21 and 26, were gunned down just over an hour later in the nearby 1200 block of South Troy Street, police said. Their conditions were also stabilized.

About 3:45 a.m., gunmen opened fire into a large group in another attack in the 1800 block of South Kildare Avenue, police said.

Eight people were shot, including a 33-year-old man who was rushed to Sinai and pronounced dead, police said. Five other males, ages 14 to 35, and two women, ages 19 and 21, suffered injuries that weren’t thought to be life-threatening.

Johnson said officers had recovered three guns about 10 p.m. Saturday when a basketball tournament let out in the area. Despite breaking up a large group after the tournament ended, Johnson said another crowd simply gathered in the area later.

“We believe that there may have been some type of planned violence and are exploring whether the shooting [on Kildare] was somehow related to something to do with the basketball game,” according to Johnson, who said investigators are also looking into any connections between that attack and the shootout in the park.

Tony Lewis, who was hanging out in Douglas Park on Sunday and lives in the area, claimed that neighborhoods ravaged by gun violence are largely forgotten after the initial outcry following high-profile shooting incidents.

“I guarantee this is only gonna make the news for, like, 10 minutes tomorrow morning,” Lewis said. “And it’s over after that. Don’t nobody really care.”