Chicago Police Tout Major Progress On Crime Hours Before City’s Latest Mass Shooting
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - AUGUST 10: A police officer stands guard following unrest on the city's westside moments before a derecho storm hits the area on August 10, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. The storm, with winds gusts close to 100 miles per hour, downed trees and power lines as it moved through the city and suburbs. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Scott Olson/Getty Images

The Chicago Police Department sent a press release touting the city’s progress on crime just hours before the Chicago suffered its latest mass shooting — an incident that left a one-month-old baby wounded.

CWB Chicago reports that CPD announced, Thursday, that the city saw a year-over-year decline in the number of murders and a year-over-year decline in the number of shootings.

“For June 2021, Chicago experienced 78 murders, down 20% compared to the 98 murders in June of 2020. Year to date there have been six fewer murders in 2021 compared to last year,” the department crowed. “The number of shooting incidents this month dropped 13% over June 2020, as well as 41 fewer shooting victims.”

As CWB noted, the statistics are somewhat misleading, given that June 2020 was a record breaking year for murders in the Windy City.

“June 2020 recorded more murders than any other June in the history of the modern Chicago Police Department,” the outlet said. “And, after victims who are still clinging to life succumb to their wounds, last month will likely rank among the five worst Junes in history.”

According to statistics CWB Chicago obtained from the Chicago Police Department directly, Chicago has not had this many murders since the early 1990s, when gang violence in the city was at a high.

CPD’s statistics on the number of murders also may be off. According to the Chicago Tribune’s tracking site, there have been 294 homicides in the city is far this year — 21 more than at this point in 2020. CPD only counts “murders,” but it’s not clear how they define the term, given that many suspects in June homicides are still at large, and the Cook County prosecutors’ office may have yet to file charges in some cases where an incident resulted in an arrest.

The release also touts a decline in carjackings since January, one of the highest months on record for carjackings in Chicago. Year over year, carjackings are actually up 7%.

Regardless of CPD’s claims, hours later, seven people, including a one-month-old baby girl, were wounded in a mass shooting on the city’s south side — the third such mass shooting in just under two weeks, and the 24th such mass shooting this year.

“A 1-month-old girl and six other people were hit by gunfire in Englewood Thursday night when three gunmen jumped from a black Jeep Cherokee and began firing up and down the street,” the Chicago Sun-Times reported. ‘The attack came just days after two mass shootings killed two women and injured 15 other people in Chicago. At least 24 shootings across the city this year have wounded four or more people, according to a Sun-Times analysis.”

The Englewood attack was captured on a video, which shows three gunman exiting an idling Jeep. The three men shot “in several directions” according to police, then jumped back into the vehicle and sped away.

“The baby was shot in the head and taken in critical condition to St. Bernard Hospital, then transferred to Comer Children’s Hospital, according to police and a Chicago Fire Department spokesman,” the Sun-Times noted, adding that, according to relatives, the baby’s condition is improving.

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