WASHINGTON — Back-to-back mass shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, shocked the country this weekend. While the nation mourned with vigils and commemorative events, gunmen in Chicago were also wreaking havoc on the city long plagued with violence.
Dozens of people were shot over the weekend in Chicago, leaving seven people dead and 46 wounded since Friday evening, CBS Chicago reported, and the city experienced two mass shootings within a four-hour span early Sunday morning. The violence in Chicago came after another mass shooting in Brooklyn the week before.
Chicago police say a gunman in a Chevrolet Camaro opened fire on bystanders at a barbecue in Douglas Park just after 1 a.m. Sunday. All but one victim were listed as stable.
Two other women were shot within an hour just a few blocks away, the Chicago Tribune reported. Then, just before 4 a.m., another eight people were shot, including one fatality in the Lawndale neighborhood, CBS Chicago reported.
In total, 17 people were shot early Sunday morning alone. A local hospital temporarily stopped accepting patients because it was filled to capacity due to the shootings.
Local officials said the three shootings early Sunday were all gang- and narcotics-related, according to NBC Chicago, but that it is possible that some of the victims were bystanders.
“I’m going to stop myself from becoming political here, but you have to stop and ask yourself, ‘What more will it take before we get a handle on what’s going on, not just in Chicago but across the county?'” said Eddie Johnson, superintendent of the Chicago Police Department.
The shootings come on the heels of another mass shooting at a New York City block party, where on July 27 two gunmen opened fire in the middle of a block party killing Jason Pagan, 38, and injuring 12 other bystanders, even with more than 100 police officers on site, according to Bklyner.
Brooklyn residents were closing down the 56th annual Old Timers Day, which brings current and former neighborhood residents together, when a barrage of bullets descended upon the busy Brownsville street. Police believe the shooting may be connected to gang violence.
“We will do everything in our power to keep this community safe and get guns off our streets,” Bill de Blasio, the New York City mayor and a presidential candidate, said during a press conference the next day.
Within hours of the Brooklyn shooting, on the other side of the country, a gunman opened fire on attendees during the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California, killing three and wounding 15.
Two other mass shootings occurred this weekend in El Paso and Dayton. In El Paso, 22 people were killed and 24 left wounded. Hours later, a lone gunman opened fire and killed nine people inside a bar in Dayton.