16 shot overnight including girl, 10

July 4, 2012 2:34:12 PM PDT
Violence continued unabated in Chicago as the Fourth of July began, with 16 people shot in a span of about 12 hours.

A 10-year-old girl in the Austin neighborhood was among those shot. Those shootings were spread through neighborhoods on the North, West and South Sides.

The girl was shot while cooling off and playing in an open fire hydrant with her mother's boyfriend, 24, in the Austin neighborhood on the West Side near Leamington and Maypole.

Both were wounded. She was shot in the wrist and abdomen and rushed to the hospital in critical condition. Earlier Wednesday, her condition was said to be improving, and by afternoon, she had reportedly stabilized and may not need surgery.

The young man was in good condition with a wound to his heel.

This is the same neighborhood where a 7-year-old girl was killed when caught in gang crossfire last week. Neighbors are frightened.

"They are taking over the city, the drugs, the guns and its always an innocent child getting killed over nothing," said resident Shirley Moore. "The police had been coming around like every day when I'm leaving out to go out to the doctor, so the corners was kinda clear, but now that it's gotten hot again, they're out here again."

Dozens of Chicago police officers gathered downtown for a roll call Tuesday evening - a show of force in front of the Water Tower on Michigan Avenue.

"A lot of crowds, a lot of people enjoying our city. That's what we want. However, we want them to be safe. That's our job," said Commander Kenneth Angarone Tuesday.

But as police began patrolling the area around Michigan Avenue and the Near North Side, gunfire erupted in other parts of the city.

The shootings began around 5 p.m., when a 15-year-old boy was wounded in the armpit. He was in a park near Gresham Elementary School.

A half hour later, a man and three teenage boys were all wounded in the Chicago Lawn neighborhood.

In the Uptown neighborhood, gunfire wounded a man and two women on Racine near Montrose. Police say two men got out of a car and began firing into a group of people before speeding away.

The two women were both in critical condition Wednesday. The man's condition was not known.

Police said they suspected gangs in both the Uptown and Chicago Lawn shootings.

As the night wore on, there were also shootings on the near West Side and in the Sheridan Park neighborhood on the North Side.

Back in Austin, one man talked with ABC 7's Jessica D'Onofrio. He did not want to be identified by name.

"It makes me feel bad for the child, because my son was raised on this block," said the man. "If you're human, you ought to feel bad about it."

However, feelings of sadness may be trumped by feelings of fear.

"Every corner you see 'em, and people [are] scared to call, because they might do something to you," said Moore.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Chicago police had made no arrests in any of the shooting incidents.


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