Man says he wears bullet proof vest driving in Chicago because of gun violence problem

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CHICAGO -- Nearly 1400 people have been shot in Chicago so far this year, according to data compiled by the Chicago Tribune and about 250 of those people have died.

There’s a week left in May and we’ve already seen more shootings this month than in all of last May.

Those numbers represent a 50 percent year-to-date increase over 2015.

And that’s before the summer, the months that are historically the city’s most violent haven’t even arrived yet.

WGN Radio producer Brian Althimer thinks he narrowly escaped becoming part of the statistics. He was driving home from work on Lake Shore Drive early Saturday morning when he says an SUV pulled up alongside his car.

“And I notice two guys and the guy in the passenger side then waves a gun at me,” he said.

Brian says he slammed on the brakes, veered off the Lake Shore Drive and got away then called the police. He’s an ex-marine and bouncer at a club on the North Side. He happens to own a built-proof vest and now he wears it every time he gets behind the wheel.

“It seems like it’s just random violence that’s happening in the city and on the highways,” he said.  “And I refuse to get caught."