Forty-three people were shot in a series of shootings in Chicago over the Labor Day weekend, killing eight.
The total number of shooting victims was nearly twice what occurred over Labor Day weekend in 2018, which saw 23 victims, eight of which were killed, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
Willie Coker, 42, was the first reported fatality during this past weekend. Coker was reportedly shot from an unknown direction when he was out with a group on South Burley Avenue, a few minutes after midnight.
Angel Perez, 18, was fatally shot that same morning around 4:43 a.m. Another man was reportedly struck during the shooting and is in serious condition, according to their most recent reporting.
Two more were killed and three more were injured just over an hour later.
Davantae Jackson, 15, was among the first shooting deaths Sunday. He was killed just a short distance from his home.
According to reporting by ABC7 Chicago, Alexis Jackson, the victim’s sister, said Jackson was lured out of his home “when they told him to come outside and he was guessing he was going to see his friends.”
About 20 minutes later, at 2:45 a.m., another man, who has yet to be identified, was shot at a house party on the South Side of Chicago.
The 27-year-old victim was pronounced dead after he was taken to the University of Chicago Medical Center.
A 34-year-old woman was also struck in the foot, but was able to take herself St. Bernard hospital, and is in good condition.
About an hour after the shooting at the house party, Christopher Smith, 37, was shot in a vehicle and was pronounced dead on the scene after being killed in a drive-by shooting in the Archer Heights area on the Southwest Side of Chicago. Another person was also injured during the shooting and is reportedly in serious condition, again according to the Chicago Sun Times.
The most recent Labor Day weekend shooting, Monday night, saw four more men injured outside of a Chicago Transit Authority station. ABC 7 Chicago reported Tuesday morning that the four men are expected to “be OK” following the shooting, and that police are still searching for two suspects who reportedly got out of a white Ford Explorer before opening fire.
The number of shooting deaths in Chicago comes about as politicians are discussing gun control policies following a different weekend shooting, this time by a single gunman in Odessa and Midland Texas, which resulted in seven deaths and dozens more injuries.
Chicago, which has relatively strict gun laws, has had 282 shooting deaths since the start of 2019, according to Chicago Tribune reporting data from Aug. 25. A total of 330 people have been killed in the city in 2019 — 55 fewer than in 2018.
Republican Sen. Ted Cruz noted Chicago’s laws in comments about gun violence prevention, suggesting gun control itself is not working.
Gun control doesn’t work. Look at Chicago. Disarming law-abiding citizens isn’t the answer. Stopping violent criminals—prosecuting & getting them off the street—BEFORE they commit more violent crimes is the most effective way to reduce murder rates. Let’s protect our citizens. https://t.co/znHO31gDH2
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) September 2, 2019
Cruz’ comments on Chicago’s gun violence prompted a response from Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, who said the gun violence in Chicago is primarily caused by guns purchased in other states.
60% of illegal firearms recovered in Chicago come from outside IL—mostly from states dominated by coward Republicans like you who refuse to enact commonsense gun legislation. Keep our name out of your mouth. https://t.co/yVM4JHL3xy pic.twitter.com/pr613A3dpf
— Lori Lightfoot (@LightfootForChi) September 3, 2019
Despite the staggering numbers, Chicago’s murder rate last month was its lowest rate for August since 2011.