After one of the most violent years in its history, only 12 days into the new year, already over 130 people have been shot in the Windy City. Twenty of those have died.
Despite the freezing temperatures, during the second weekend of the year the toll of shootings was higher than average with 22 shot and 7 killed.
But this chilly weekend isn’t much of an outlier despite the slightly higher number of deaths as the first 12 days of the new year have brought 130 people shot in the incessant crime and gang warfare in the city.
As reported by the Chicago Tribune, Chicago police spokesman Anthony Guglielmi released a statement pointing out the gang factor in the continuing violence.
“Every year Chicago Police recover more illegal guns than officers in any other city, and as more and more illegal guns continue to find their way into our neighborhoods it is clear we need stronger state and federal gun laws,” Guglielmi said. “So far this year, the majority of the gun violence we’ve seen are a result of chronic gang conflicts driven in part by social media commentary and petty disputes among rival factions. Despite an overall lack of cooperation from gang members, detectives are working aggressively and making optimistic progress in several cases.”
But it is not just shootings here and there that have contributed to the large number of victims, it is the number of mass shootings involving multiple victims.
There have already been fifteen shootings in the city involving two or even more victims. One incident saw five victims shot, five incidents featured three victims, and there were nine cases involving two victims.
But the start of the new year is on par with how 2015 went. Last year saw an astounding 2,995 shootings from which 443 people died.
The number of murders and shootings in the city stands in stark contrast to President Obama and Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan’s seeming assumption that the nation needs to reduce sentencing in criminal cases.
Ryan and Obama are pushing legislation that would result in the mass release of federal drug felons–including the dealers who are the root cause of much of Chicago’s gun violence–and cuts in the mandatory minimum sentences that by some accounts has helped drive the 25-year downward trend in crime.
As Paul Mirengoff of Powerline notes, “Ryan’s push for “sentencing reform” is a betrayal of both conservatism and common sense. ”
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