31st Street Beach gathering ends in 4 arrests

The gathering was relatively peaceful compared with other recent unsanctioned gatherings at North Avenue Beach, where partygoers pelted glass bottles at officers in May, and Millennium Park, where a teenager was shot and killed near The Bean.

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A police officer was injured in an incident June 16, 2022, in Humboldt Park.

Sun-Times files

Police arrested four people, one of them a 16-year-old with a gun, during a large gathering at 31st Street Beach Wednesday evening, according to police.

Large crowds of youth gathered at the beach during the “takeover” or “trend” event that was promoted anonymously on social media.

The gathering was relatively peaceful compared with other recent unsanctioned gatherings at North Avenue Beach, where partygoers pelted glass bottles at officers in May, and Millennium Park, where a teenager was shot and killed near The Bean.

A flyer promoting Wednesday’s gathering at 31st Street Beach.

A flyer promoting Wednesday’s gathering at 31st Street Beach.

Police said four people were arrested and charged, three of them for gun offenses, at Wednesday’s gathering:

  • A 16-year-old boy was charged with unauthorized use of a weapon after police spotted him with a handgun in his waistband around 8 p.m.
  • A man, 18, was found with a gun was charged with unauthorized use of a weapon.
  • A man, 22, was charged with a misdemeanor count of concealed carry in a park facility.
  • A man, 27, was arrested for aggravated battery to an officer and resisting arrest.

Videos posted to social media showed crowds of hundreds of people at the beach, mingling among dozens of police officers.

The gathering comes after several other similar events that ended in violence.

In late May, police recovered 11 guns from North Avenue Beach and arrested 13 people after officers were allegedly pelted with glass bottles thrown by party goers.

On May 11, another party at North Avenue Beach with over 400 people spilled onto the streets of Old Town.

On May 16, Seandell Holliday, 16, was shot and killed during a fight at another large gathering near “The Bean” at Millennium Park.

The shooting led Mayor Lori Lightfoot to impose a curfew on unaccompanied minors at Millennium Park. She also imposed a 10 p.m. citywide curfew for minors 17 and under.

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