Thirteen people were wounded in a shooting at a party on Chicago’s south side intended to honor the victim of an earlier shooting, police said, adding that they have identified two people they consider of interest to the investigation.
It was the latest in a string in violent crimes in Chicago, where the number of murders reported annually remains higher than the combined figure from New York and Los Angeles, two much larger cities.
The victims ranged in age from 16 to 48, and 12 were in local hospitals on Sunday morning, hours after police responded at the scene at around 12:30 a.m. CT, according to a police statement.
One of the victims, a 21-year-old male, was critically injured after being shot in the lower back, the statement said.
The police statement said one of the people of interest, a 25-year-old male, was also a victim in the shooting. Police did not immediately respond to a request for further details.
“This party was given in the memorial of a subject that was slain in April,” said Chicago Police Chief of Patrol Fred Waller. “We’re still developing details as far as that goes.”
The city is in the midst of a search for a new permanent police superintendent, after Mayor Lori Lightfoot fired Eddie Johnson weeks before he was due to retire, accusing him of lying to her over an October incident where patrol officers found him asleep in his car.
“All over the world, they’re talking about Chicago”
It was headline news in Chicago last month when the city went one full day without a reported shooting.
Gun rights advocates often point to the city when arguing the inefficacy of gun control.
Residents are permitted to own firearms but only with many restrictions.
Chicago, the nation’s third-largest city, has grappled with a high homicide rate over the last few years, which President Donald Trump has cited as troublesome.
Chicago’s Democratic leaders have accused President Donald Trump of using the city’s crime rate to malign it.
During a visit to Chicago in September, Trump said Chicago with its high rate of murders compared unfavorably with Afghanistan, where the United States has been at war since an invasion triggered by the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.
“It’s embarrassing to us as a nation. All over the world, they’re talking about Chicago. Afghanistan is a safe place by comparison, it’s true,” said Trump.
Chicago had 561 homicides in 2018 and the Chicago Tribune has reported that, through Oct. 26, it had 436 homicides this year.
(Reporting by Gabriella Borter in Fairfield, Connecticut; Editing by Scott Malone, Lisa Shumaker and Sonya Hepinstall. Pluralist contributed to this report.)