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Chicago’s most violent weekend of 2021: 104 shot, 19 of them killed. 13 kids among the wounded

By 5 p.m. Monday, Chicago had recorded 2,000 shootings this year, a Sun-Times’ database shows.

Chicago police at the scene of a shooting in the 8900 block of South Carpenter Street in Gresham Saturday where four people were shot.
Chicago police at the scene of a shooting in the 8900 block of South Carpenter Street in Gresham Saturday where four people were shot.
Tyler LaRiviere / Sun-Times

In the deadliest and most violent weekend this year in Chicago, over 100 people were shot over the long Fourth of July weekend, 19 of them killed.

Among the wounded were 13 children and two Chicago police supervisors. Five of the kids were shot within nine hours Sunday evening through early Monday.

Both the number of fatal shootings and the number of shootings overall are highs for 2021, according to a Chicago Sun-Times database of shootings.

Through July 4, the most recent city data available, 2,019 people have been shot in Chicago this year, an increase of almost 13% over last year and a 58% increase in shootings compared with 2019.

In one of the weekend attacks, two people were killed and four wounded, including a 12-year-old girl and a 13-year-old boy in Washington Park on the South Side.

That happened around the same time that a 6-year-old girl and a woman were shot in West Pullman and about four hours after an 11-year-old boy and a man were shot in Brainerd on the South Side. And late Sunday afternoon, a 5-year-old girl was shot in a leg, also in West Pullman.

The Washington Park shooting happened around 1:05 a.m. Monday in the 6100 block of South Wabash Avenue, where a large group of kids and adults gathered outside in a parking lot outside an apartment building to socialize and light off fireworks. Someone inside a car that drove by a group of people there started shooting, according to the police.

A 21-year-old man, shot twice in the head, and a 26-year-old man, shot in the torso, were pronounced dead at the University of Chicago Medical Center, police said.

The 12-year-old was struck in the buttocks and taken to Comer Children’s Hospital, according to the police, who said the 13-year-old was shot in a hand and also taken to Comer to be treated.

A woman, 29, was struck in the elbow and taken to the hospital in good condition, and the sixth victim, a 34-year-old woman, suffered two graze wounds, according to the police.

“I wish that whatever this madness is going on, I wish that it would stop,” said Toni Watkins, who lives in an apartment complex that overlooks the parking lot where the shooting was and has lived in the area for seven years. “Usually, I feel safe around here. But now this has me questioning it because it’s close to home right now.”

Blood stains the parking lot next to an apartment building in the 6100 block of South Wabash Avenue where six people were shot, two of them fatally.
Blood stains the parking lot next to an apartment building in the 6100 block of South Wabash Avenue where six people were shot, two of them fatally.
Brian Rich / Sun-Times

She said she’s fearful for her own 16-year-old daughter.

“I tell her every day, ‘If you’re going out or going to work, please be careful, and come back home to me. Stay away from those knuckleheads,’ ” Watkins said.

Watkins said she cried when she heard about an earlier shooting in which a 1-month-old baby was shot last week while in a car. She said she’s distraught over kids being shot: “They didn’t ask to be hurt. I just pray and hope that the kids are OK that got hurt.”

The parking lot next to an apartment building in the 6100 block of South Wabash Avenue where six people were shot, two of them killed.
The parking lot next to an apartment building in the 6100 block of South Wabash Avenue where six people were shot, two of them killed.
Brian Rich / Sun-Times

Several people who live near the parking lot where the shootings happened said groups of 100 or more people often gather there.

A 27-year-old man who said he has lived on that block for 15 years said that “street beefs” mean “everything revolves around retaliation.” But what he said he can’t understand is, “You see a whole bunch of kids, something should click in your head saying not to shoot.”

Shelley Childs recently moved with her 9-year-old son into a lower-level apartment that overlooks the parking lot.

“We’re sitting up there, having a good time, enjoying ourselves, celebrating Fourth of July, and you’re out [there] plotting to kill people,” Childs said of whoever was behind the shootings. “That’s why I’m getting my son and myself away.”

Childs, 25, said she had left the neighborhood Sunday, and, “Something told me don’t come home, it’s so crazy.”

Childs said the violence is “becoming normal.” She said someone was shot and killed about a month ago outside her mother’s house in Hyde Park.

“I saw the body,” her son said.

The 9-year-old said that he tried “to stay calm, think of something else and think of something peaceful.”

“It’s scary,” said his mother, who’s working toward a nursing degree. “I feel like I need to carry a gun, and I don’t want to. But it’s been a trend of kids and women being shot more and more and more around here. And it’s scary. I cannot wait to leave.”

Police commander, sergeant shot on West Side

A Chicago police commander and a sergeant were shot and wounded early Monday after the police disperse a crowd on the West Side.

The officers were hit when someone on foot fired shots around 1:30 a.m. in the 100 block of North Long Avenue, police said.

The commander was struck in the foot, and the sergeant was grazed in the leg, according to police.

Driver fatally shot in Little Village

A man was killed while driving Monday in Little Village on the Southwest Side.

He was driving a gray SUV about 9:15 a.m. in the 3400 block of West 26th Street when someone fired shots at his vehicle, striking him multiple times, police said.

The 34-year-old crashed into a parked car after the shooting, police said. He was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

1 killed, 1 hurt in Lawndale shooting

A man was killed and another man wounded in a shooting Monday morning in Lawndale on the West Side.

The men were outside just after 2 a.m. in the 1800 block of South Kildare Avenue when they were struck by gunfire, police said.

One man, about 30 years old, suffered multiple gunshot wounds to the body and was pronounced dead at Mount Sinai Hospital, according to police. He has not yet been identified. The other man, 62, suffered a gunshot wound to the knee and was taken to the same hospital where his condition was stabilized, police said.

Woman shot to death in Austin

One person was killed and three others wounded in a shooting Sunday night in Austin on the West Side.

About 10:45 p.m., two men and a woman were standing in an alley in the first block of North Menard Avenue when a 33-year-old man began shooting at them, police said.

A woman, 30, suffered a gunshot wound to the head and was pronounced dead at the scene, according to police.

A man, 32, was struck multiple times in the body and taken to Stroger Hospital where his condition was stabilized, police said.

Another man, 49, suffered a gunshot wound to the buttocks and was taken to the same hospital where his condition was also stabilized, police said.

A 49-year-old man, who was a concealed carry license holder, witnessed the incident and shot at the offender, according to police.

The offender, a 33-year-old man, was struck in the arm and hip, police said. He was placed into custody and taken to Stroger Hospital in serious condition.

Old Town fatal shooting

Just after 6 a.m. Sunday, a man was walking across the street in the 200 block of West Division Street when someone approached him and the two exchanged words, police said. The other person then began firing several shots towards the man, striking him in the torso, police said.

He was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital, where he died, police said.

Teen killed on Near West Side

A 19-year-old man was killed while riding in a vehicle late Saturday on the Near West Side.

Just after 11 p.m., the teen was riding as a passenger in a vehicle in the 2600 block of West Van Buren Street when someone fired several shots, police said.

He suffered five gunshot wounds throughout his body and was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital where he was pronounced dead, police said.

Another teen fatally shot in West Pullman

A 17-year-old boy died after he was shot Saturday night at a West Pullman neighborhood home on the Far South Side.

About 9:30 p.m., the teenager was in the basement of the home in the 12000 block of South Yale Avenue with several others when someone opened fire, police said. He was shot twice the head and was taken to Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn.

The teen, identified as Amari Brown, was pronounced dead at 7:50 a.m. Sunday at the hospital, the Cook County medical examiner’s office said.

Little Village shooting

A man was killed and two others wounded in a shooting Saturday evening in Little Village on the Southwest Side.

About 7 p.m., a concerned citizen called in a tip about a vehicle driving slowly and bumping against a curb, police said. Responding officers found the man, thought to be about 20 years old, inside the vehicle in the 4200 block of South Cicero Avenue with three gunshot wounds to the torso, police said.

He was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said. His name hasn’t been released.

Two other men, 32 and 27, were struck in the arm and taken to the same hospital, where they were listed in good condition, police said.

Teen shot to death in Belmont Cragin

A member of the National Guard and aspiring Chicago police officer was found shot to death early Saturday in Belmont Cragin on the Northwest Side.

Chrys Carvajal, of Portage Park, had attended a house party Friday night with his girlfriend and at one point went to get something from his car, his sister Jennifer Ramirez said.

About 1:25 a.m., officers responded to a call of shots fired in the 2200 block of North Lockwood Avenue and found Carvajal, 19, lying unresponsive on the sidewalk with gunshot wounds to the back and abdomen, police said. He was transported to Illinois Masonic Medical Center where he was pronounced dead, according to police.

Carvajal was found early Saturday lying unresponsive on the sidewalk in the 2200 block of North Lockwood Avenue with gunshot wounds to the back and abdomen, police said. He was transported to Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.

“We are all very upset and we’re heartbroken,” Ramirez said Sunday. “My mom, she’s really devastated, too. She’s been crying. She has a sore throat because of all the crying, she’s just heartbroken.”

Ramirez said it’s hard to imagine life without her brother, whom she’ll remember as a man with a “big loving heart” who was always willing to help others. She pleaded for anyone with information to come forward.

“We just want people to help. If they saw something, if they know something to help, because if it was their family member, and we saw something, and my family saw something or witnessed something, we would speak up,” she said. “That’s the right thing to do.”

‘Finger-pointing must end’

Last weekend, 10 people were killed and 68 others wounded in shootings across Chicago.

Amid the notoriously violent weekend, the Rev. Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow PUSH Coalition on Sunday hosted a Fourth of July cookout and party at the Concordia Place Apartments on the Far South Side.

At the event, Jackson urged people to put down their guns and called on city officials, including Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Chicago Police Supt. David Brown, to actively work together to tamp down gun violence.

“The finger-pointing must end,” Jackson said.

He later added that, “We need better and we deserve better.”

Jackson’s comments come two days after City Council members spent six hours interrogating Brown over his plans to curb the latest surge in summertime gun violence.

“We urge people... to put down their guns, stop the violence. Of course, when they see violence — [an] attempt to overthrow our government and they’re treated with kid gloves, it decreases the message: If you pick up a gun and shoot somebody, you’re not walking away,” Jackson said. “We deserve a better America.”

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