Chicago experienced its most violent Memorial Day weekend in five years — nine killed, 42 wounded — despite stepped up police patrols and a focus on neighborhood programs that city officials hoped would provide peaceful alternatives.
About half of those shot were on the West Side, most of them in a single police district, the 11th, where there were two mass shootings on Sunday. On the South Side, at least 14 people were shot. And downtown, where there has been a spike in shootings all year, four people were hit by gunfire.
The weekend was the most violent since 2017, when seven people were killed and 45 people were wounded, according to Chicago police data. The year before, 69 people had been shot over the long holiday weekend.
This past weekend’s toll is sharply higher than last year, when three people were killed and 34 others were wounded.
The Chicago Police Department canceled days off over the weekend, but Police Supt. David Brown was vague last Friday about the numbers of additional police officers assigned to work.
He would only say the safety plan included foot, bike and roving patrols; traffic safety, DUI saturation and carjacking task force missions; and gang and gun and organized retail theft investigations.
At the same news conference, Mayor Lori Lightfoot said weekend programs in 15 high-crime neighborhoods — including music-and-game-filled “kickbacks” with DJs — would be held later into the night to fill gaps pinpointed in conversations with young people in those neighborhoods.
On Saturday, faith leaders led a march for peace down Michigan Avenue. “There will be no silence till we end the violence,” a group of about 50 people chanted as they marched down the Mag Mile to Millennium Park.
Many of the weekend shootings occurred in neighborhoods long troubled by gun violence.
- In Lawndale, five people were wounded after gunmen opened fire on a crowd marking the anniversary of another teen’s killing. A 16-year-old girl was among the wounded in the shooting early Sunday morning in the 800 block of South Karlov Avenue. Shell casings and at least 97 evidence markers could be seen in the street outside Daniel Webster Elementary School.
- Later Sunday, a man was killed and four others wounded, including a gunman, during a domestic incident in Humboldt Park. The shooting led to a standoff with a police SWAT team. A gunman, 23, was arrested over an hour later and treated for a gunshot wound, police said.
Other fatal shootings from the weekend:
- A man was shot to death early Tuesday in Brighton Park on the Southwest Side. The 25-year-old was inside a vehicle about 12:30 a.m. when a dark car pulled up near him and someone from inside fired shots in the 3600 block of South Kedzie Avenue, Chicago police said. The man was shot in the neck and was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital, where he was pronounced dead. His name hasn’t been released.
- Three men were wounded, one fatally, in a shooting Monday in Burnside on the South Side. They were near a sidewalk about 7:45 p.m. in the 1300 block of East 93rd Street when someone opened fire, police said. One man, 25, was shot in the chest and taken to Trinity Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said. Another man, 26, was also shot in the chest and taken to the same hospital in critical condition. The third man, 27, suffered a gunshot wound to his body and taken to the University of Chicago Medical Center, police said. His condition was not immediately known.
- A man was fatally shot Monday in Gresham on the South Side. About 5 p.m., the 27-year-old was in the 8600 block of South Aberdeen Street when he was shot multiple times, police said. He was taken to Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn, where he was pronounced dead, police said.
- Also Monday, a man was killed in a shooting in Englewood on the South Side. He was inside a residence about 2:50 p.m. in the 6900 block of South Green Street when someone opened fire, striking him in the face and abdomen, Chicago police said. The 31-year-old was pronounced dead at the scene.
- Jeremy Benson, 33, was shot and killed Sunday morning while driving in the West Garfield Park neighborhood, authorities said. He was shot while driving in the 4400 block of West Madison Street and crashed into a median, police said. He died at Mount Sinai Hospital.
- A man was killed early Sunday in Englewood when gunfire erupted during a birthday party. The shooting sent hundreds of people running in the 5700 block of South Carpenter Street. A 24-year-old was shot and pronounced dead at the scene. Police placed a white cloth over the man, who was lying on a sidewalk near evidence markers. “They won’t even let me see his body,” the man’s mother said. “They could at least let me hold his hand.
- Hours earlier, two men killed each other during a shootout in Englewood, police said. The shootout happened at 5 p.m. Saturday in the 5500 block of South Bishop Street, police said. Both men were pronounced dead at the University of Chicago Medical Center. One of the men was identified as Derrick Washington, 29. The other man was 38
- Saturday afternoon, a man was killed in Chicago Lawn on the Southwest Side. He was shot in his head around 1:30 p.m. in the 2400 block of West 63rd Street, police said. He died at Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn. Police released no other details.
At least 32 people were shot last weekend in Chicago.
Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the number of murders over the holiday weekend. As of Monday, the total was 9.