Emanuel: Weekend violence ‘senseless, meaningless’

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Chicago's police superintendent lashed out at what he called lax state and federal gun laws after a violent Fourth of July weekend that saw more than 60 people shot and nine killed in a city already known for frequent shootings.

"There has to come a tipping point where this changes," Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said Monday of the violence. "The illogical nature of what's happening here -- that government can intercede and prevent this from happening is overwhelming. And I refuse to think otherwise in a great country like America that we can continue to allow this to happen -- not just on a state, but on a federal level."

McCarthy, reciting the criminal histories of several of the suspects in this weekend's violence, noted gang members face tougher consequences for losing their guns from their gangs than from authorities.

"Possession of a loaded firearm -- it's not even considered a violent felony in the state of Illinois for sentencing purposes -- which is why you see the revolving door," he said.

Among the suspects: a man wanted in connection with a murder who has 21 prior arrests, and another with six previous arrests, including one this year for aggravated assault for discharging a weapon.

"How this individual is out on bond is beyond me," McCarthy said.

The incidents include eight times in which police fired guns at suspects or were fired on, McCarthy told reporters. In two of those incidents, police shot and killed the suspects, both of whom were 16.

McCarthy said the violence unraveled a string of successes by police in suppressing gun violence this year. The city saw 21 shooting incidents on Sunday alone, he said, although three of them may have been self-inflicted.

Marlin Williams' niece Tonya Gunn was among the nine victims, killed in a drive-by shooting Sunday night while she was cooking food on the grill. Her 11-year-old daughter witnessed the shooting.

"I feel hurt," Williams said Monday. "I will never be able to see my niece again."

In 2013, 12 people died and 75 were injured during the four-day Independence Day holiday, according to CNN affiliate WLS.

The holiday shootings follow a week in which Chicago had 52 shooting incidents, according to Police Department statistics. This year, as of June 29, Chicago police had recorded 880 shooting incidents, an average of nearly five a day.

McCarthy said Monday, "It's Groundhog Day here in Chicago."

Mayor Rahm Emanuel called the violence "simply unacceptable" and said the city needs to go beyond policing and provide youths "alternatives to the street."

McCarthy said police will continue a summer program to flood high-violence areas with police, but he said that without stronger gun laws, police will continue to face an uphill battle.

"These offenders need to be held fully accountable for violent behavior to prevent them from ending up back on the street too soon," he said, adding, "There's too many guns coming in and too little punishment going out."
TM & © 2014 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.


Related: McCarthy on violent holiday weekend: ‘It’s Groundhog Day here in Chicago’

Related: 2 blocks, 30 minutes of gunfire: Just part of deadly weekend in Chicago

Chicago Tribune's map of shootings


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  • Yea Rahm It IS Senseless

    What is Senseless Raham
    is you. Why I would say such a thing, well let me explain.
    You chose to install more speed and traffic light cameras instead of
    hiring more police when they are overwhelmed responding to call after call.
    Also for that matter what about their contract?
    The only one person accountable is you. You where elected to keep the people of the city safe, not just to increase revenue and build new charter schools.
    Now having said that, what are you going to do about the violence issue?
    Unbelievable over 80 peole shot 14 dead, cops are out gunned, over worked and undermanned. Time for transparency and change.

  • Thought I smelled garbage in this hot weather

    I thought it was you. You are a racist, fasist-neo nazi from the weekends news post (Proud Aryan) I don ‘t forget the smell of garbage & don ‘t make me laugh your a misguided sick uneducated child .
    Why don ‘t you stop placing blame on a select ethinic origin. I so you know and am not african american, and I take offense to race haters,
    of all kind like you.
    You want to be part of a soution ? Why don’t you get a garbage bag and start picking up trash on Chicago’s streets. Oh and when the bag is almost full, feel free to jump right in the bag and get ready for garbage pickup day you trash talking POS.

  • americanagain

    STFU Rahm! What do you expect when kids are raising kids? You (the government) just keep out handing freebies and expect nothing in return from them. They have no sense of responsibility to society. Just gimme, gimme gimme! I am telling my friends and family do not visit this city. One more year for me and Iam out of here.

  • WGN Information Tech Dept

    Please report the above posts at times of
    8:27 pm
    8:22 pm
    7:59 pm

    IP adress(es) to the authorities for further investigation, of potentially inciting mob action and diarraeah of the mouth.
    Keep talking (Proud Aryan) The Feds are coming for you race biggot.

  • Mary

    Gun Control, Gang control is what is needed. The law says felons cannot buy guns, So where was that law when A person with 21 priors has a gun, a 16 year old has a gun, People focus on the wrong thing. Stop criminals from obtaining guns. Do you think any of these people used the legal gun control laws to obtain their guns?

  • Haywood Jablomie

    Hey, Rahm, YOU are one of the largest contributors to the violence in Chicago. Your left wing tactics are all FAILURES.

    You have a lot of chutzpah to do a photo op when a little girl was killed due to some of YOUR policies!