Chicago’s Memorial Day weekend was scarred by gun violence that left nine people dead and at least 31 others injured, including a 4-year-old girl.
The girl, Jacele Johnson was sitting in a car outside a prom party in the West Englewood neighborhood Friday evening around 8pm when she was shot in the head. She underwent surgery for the wound, her mother told NBC Chicago. A 17-year-old boy and a 15-year-old girl were also shot in the same incident, with both suffering graze wounds and being taken to local hospitals.
The first shooting death of the weekend occurred around 1:45am Saturday, when a 34-year-old man was shot while sitting on the front steps of a home in the Wicker Park neighborhood.
Early Sunday, in an other incident in West Englewood, two men, ages 25 and 39, and a 29-year-old woman were shot at a house party by a group of people who hadn’t been allowed in. The woman was shot in the chest and leg and was pronounced dead after being taken to a nearby hospital. The men also were hospitalized. The younger man is said to be in stable condition, the older one in serious condition.
Sunday evening around 8:15pm, a 15-year old was killed, and a 14-year-old was wounded in the foot when the pair was shot by someone in a light-colored sedan while standing outside.
Gun violence has long plagued the nation’s third-largest city, but this year has been especially bad so far, after a decline in 2014. The first three months of 2015 saw a 40% increase in shootings and 29% increase in homicides compared to the previous year.
The issue flared in the city’s mayoral race last month, with challenger Jesus “Chuy” Garcia accusing Mayor Rahm Emanuel of failing to stem the tide of violence. Emanuel, who won re-election, called on state lawmakers to tighten gun laws.