Chicago shaken by bloody July 4 weekend in which 109 people were shot, 19 fatally
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Chicago shaken by bloody July 4 weekend in which 109 people were shot, 19 fatally

Authorities said the long Fourth of July weekend in Chicago was a bloody one, with 109 people shot and 19 killed.

According to data released by police, from Wednesday, July 3 to Sunday, July 7, there were a total of 74 shooting incidents in the Windy City, including three mass shootings.

The youngest victim was 8-year-old Bryson Orr, who was killed along with two relatives in a shooting at a home in the Grand Crossing neighborhood on the morning of July 4. Two other boys, ages 5 and 7, were wounded in the shooting, NBC Chicago reported.

Chicago shaken by bloody July 4 weekend in which 109 people were shot, 19 fatallyChicago shaken by bloody July 4 weekend in which 109 people were shot, 19 fatally

July 4 shooting in Chicago (John J. Kim/Chicago Tribune via Getty Images)

Eight people were shot in a mass shooting in Chicago’s Little Italy neighborhood on Friday, including teenagers and a 74-year-old woman. Police said initial information indicates there was an exchange of gunfire between two unidentified gunmen who fled the scene.

Last year, 11 people died and 62 were injured during the long holiday weekend, according to NBC Chicago.

Mayor Brandon Johnson condemned the violence at a news conference Monday, saying, “When this mindless violence devastates our city on this scale, we lose a part of the soul of Chicago.”

The barrage of gunfire is not unique to the city. Violence and mass shootings tend to spike during the summer months, and July 4 has historically had the most mass shootings over the past decade, followed by July 5, data from the Gun Violence Archive shows, according to The Associated Press.

Johnson asked for more federal resources to support communities affected by the carnage. The mayor also urged community members to look out for each other and come forward with the names of perpetrators.

“Our city needs us all to support and care for our neighbors and our children,” he said.

“Let me be clear: This is a choice. It’s a choice to kill. A choice to kill women. A choice to kill children, a choice to kill the elderly. These are choices that criminals made and that they calculated.”

Chicago Police Chief Larry Snelling highlighted the challenges police faced over the long weekend.

“We look at holidays throughout the year, the Fourth of July and other times like that, when groups come together, large groups come together. And sometimes that violence comes from minor arguments. People who have been together all day come together as a group, they’ve been drinking, tempers flare and people decide they’re going to take their differences out through violence, especially gun violence,” he said.

An emergency care center will open in Fosco Park on Tuesday, where community organizations will provide support to residents in difficult situations, including crisis counseling.

Johnson noted that the violence did not happen “in a vacuum” but is the result of generations of underinvestment and profound disenfranchisement.

He also stressed that there are a lot of illegal weapons on the streets of Chicago that need to be gotten rid of.

“We must also redouble our efforts to get guns off our streets. When a 16-year-old has access to an AK-47, violence begins long before those weapons end up in the hands of young people across our city and across the country.”

According to Chicago Police crime statistics, shootings were down 7% in the week ending June 30 compared to the same week last year. Additionally, shootings were down 27% compared to 2021. However, in the 28 days leading up to June 30, shootings were up 12% compared to the same time last year.