A University of Chicago student blasted Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot Thursday for claiming crime is on the decline in the city after a violent weekend that saw more than 100 people shot and at least 18 killed.
That 18 included the student’s classmate, Max Lewis, who was commuting home on the city’s subway system during rush hour on July 1st when he was pierced in the neck by a stray bullet and killed.
“Lewis, 20, was commuting on the city’s Green Line during rush hour on July 1 from his internship at an investment firm in downtown Chicago, the Chicago Sun-Times reported. While sitting inside the train, a bullet pierced the window and struck the back of his neck at the 51st Street/Washington Park Station,” according to Fox News.
Lewis was rushed to a nearby hospital where he died on Sunday.
Chicago is suffering through a wave of violent crime, like most major American cities. Unlike most major American cities, however, the number of people shot in Chicago over the Independence Day weekend was greater in 2021 than it was in 2020.
Lightfoot, in press conferences last week, insisted that crime was on the decline — a contention University of Chicago student Audrey Unverferth called a “blatant lie” in an appearance on Fox News.
“Lori Lightfoot had the nerve recently to say that crime in Chicago is on the decline—that’s a blatant lie,” Unverferth told the network. I don’t have confidence in Lightfoot anymore.”
“Despite not knowing Lewis personally, Unverferth said all her fellow classmates were ‘devastated’ by his ‘senseless’ death,” Fox said.
Unverferth also penned an opinion column for The Federalist, claiming that Chicago students are now scared to ride the city’s public transportation system, which connects the University of Chicago to the city’s downtown.
“I’ve ridden the CTA countless times. When my friends and I board the train, we shouldn’t fear that we’ll be murdered by stray bullets. When we sit down on the bus, we shouldn’t worry that we’ll be knifed to death,” she wrote.
On Wednesday, Lightfoot reportedly begged President Joe Biden for help controlling the city violence in a short meeting on the O’Hare airport tarmac, just before Biden departed for a campaign-style stop in a suburb more than an hour outside the city. The Washington Examiner claimed, Thursday, that Lightfoot asked Biden for “federal troops” — an offer she turned down from former President Donald Trump last summer when the city’s violent crime was approaching a record high.
Biden, so far, has offered to press for more restrictive gun laws — an offer he reportedly reiterated in his tarmac meeting with the mayor.
“According to White House press secretary Jen Psaki, Biden reiterated his commitment to working with Lightfoot and city leaders to counter gun violence and added that the Department of Justice would soon be in touch about a recently announced strike force meant to crack down on gun trafficking in Chicago and four other cities — including New York,” the New York Post said.
So far this year, more than 2,000 people have been shot in the city of Chicago, including 36 police officers, and more than 100 children. The city’s 2021 still trail behind its numbers from 2020, according to the Chicago Police Department, but the New York Post noted that the numbers are more than 30% higher than in 2019.