With 56 total homicides for January, the City of Chicago eked past 1999’s record of 55 January deaths with a month-ending weekend that saw 8 homicides and 23 wounded citizens. One death even occurred in the boyhood home of a Chicago Bulls player.
Friday rang in with a bang, with one death and eight shootings, including one incident featuring three victims at once. The death occurred just after 6 PM in the Austin neighborhood.
Saturday was bloodier still, with three deaths out of 11 shootings.
One incident resulting in two deaths ended with a car accident, as a man and a teenager, both of whom had been shot, were trying to drive to the hospital to have their wounds treated.
The car crash occurred early on Sunday morning when the driver, 21-year-old Alan Garcia, smashed his vehicle into a roadside flower planter in the 3700 block of North California at around 5 AM. 16-year-old Robeerto Sanchez was a passenger in the car. Both had been shot—the driver in the head—and were desperately trying to get to the hospital. After the accident, both men were taken to the hospital where both later died.
Chicago police were also involved in a shooting when officers were called to a home invasion in the boyhood home of Chicago Bulls star Derrick Rose.
Police were called to the South Side home around 4:30 AM on Sunday morning. According to police, “shots were exchanged” after they were met by an “armed offender.” Charles M. Smith, 29, was pronounced dead on the scene.
A weapon was recovered at the scene, but the officer involved in the shooting was removed from the street and put on desk duty by the recommendation of the Independent Police Review Authority.
The famed Bulls player was surprised by the incident and said only, “No, I haven’t heard about that,” when the media asked him about the shooting.
Finally, charges have been filed for last week’s shocking shooting in one of Chicago’s most popular hotels that caters to the city’s convention business. Prosecutors announced that a fight over a woman led Armonte Hooper to shoot and kill Taylor in the lobby of the Hyatt Hotel last weekend.
Prosecutors say Hooper became enraged and shot the victim after he felt Taylor was hitting on his girlfriend.
The totals for January’s violence comes in at 296 shootings, from which 57 died. The numbers surpassed January of 2015, which saw only 149 shot and 32 killed. But the first month of 2016 also surpassed January of 1999, when 55 were killed. The city has to go back to 1997 to find the next highest number murdered, when 61 were murdered in the Windy City.
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