Chicago/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on May 28, 2024
Chicago's Memorial Day Weekend Marred by Gun Violence: 41 Shot, 9 Dead Including a 5-Year-OldSource: Chicago Police Department

Chicago was racked by a wave of violence over the Memorial Day weekend, with at least 41 people shot, nine fatally, culminating in a police shooting late Monday night in the city's South Austin neighborhood; the incident left one man dead and another wounded, reported NBC Chicago. This spasm of gun violence and the law enforcement response echo a grim pattern that has become all too familiar in the city’s streets.

The Chicago Police Department revealed that the officers were on patrol when they saw a suspect attempting a stabbing on the block of S. Cicero Avenue, and despite their efforts to de-escalate the situation, were compelled to fire their weapons, striking the assailant, who later died at the hospital the victim of the attempted stabbing was also hit and critically wounded, according to the Civilian Office of Police Accountability, two officers were transported to a hospital for observation. The weekend’s violence began with two men found shot to death in Albany Park late Friday night, with other shootings ensuing across the city, including the death of 5-year-old Reign Ware who was fatally shot while sitting in her father's parked car, the tragic incident was covered by Chicago Tribune. Mayor Brandon Johnson's approach to the holiday weekend involved an emphasis on social programs and youth outreach in an attempt to stem the tide of violence that has previously seen up to 71 shootings during the same weekend in 2016.

Of the multiple incidents over the course of the weekend, the Chicago Police had their hands full with 31 shooting events since Friday, the department confirmed, but no suspects have been arrested in connection with the three separate slayings on Memorial Day itself, a grim toll that includes the death of a man in Douglass Park due to multiple gunshot wounds and the stabbing death of a 23-year-old in the West Side's South Austin neighborhood, punctuating a holiday marked by somber remembrance with a fresh spate of violence to mourn.

Despite Mayor Johnson's promise on Friday that his administration would tirelessly work to stop the violence, the weekend's toll stands as a painful reminder of the city's struggle to contain its epidemic of shootings; this has involved community-focused efforts that invest less in the sort of high-level enforcement days off for police officers and more in the well-being of neighborhoods. COPA is currently reviewing the use of force in the Memorial Day shooting involving police officers, and those involved have been reassigned to administrative duties for at least 30 days while the investigation proceeds, this information was released by the police watchdog group.