Chicago shooting: 5 wounded in Auburn Gresham while standing outside food mart

Michelle Gallardo Image
Wednesday, July 14, 2021
5 shot outside Auburn Gresham food mart
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Five people were shot Wednesday afternoon outside Justine Food Mart in the Auburn Gresham neighborhood, Chicago police said.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Five people, four men and a woman, were shot Wednesday afternoon in the Auburn Gresham neighborhood, Chicago police said.

The shooting occurred outside a convenience store in the 7900-block of South Justine Avenue at about 12:09 p.m., police said.

The shooting took place just blocks from St. Sabina Catholic Church and across the street from a local anti-violence organization.

"We can't keep seeing this carnage in our streets. We're changing our name from the Windy City to the Bloody City," said Father Michael Pfleger.

Police said shortly after 12 p.m., three people got out of a silver sedan on the corner outside the Justine Food Mart and started shooting at a group gathered near the corner. The motive, however, is unknown.

"These folks that got shot sit there every day. It's a normal spot. They do every day. So what's behind it we don't know but we've got to find out," Pfleger said.

"It's a group of individuals that just sit on the corner, and yeah, they might be smoking and there might be some drinking going on," said Autry Phillips, executive director, Target Area DevCorp. "But it's not like they're actually picking up guns and shooting people as they cross the street. It's a regular neigbhorhood-type setting. That's what it was."

RELATED: 5 hurt in West Garfield Park shooting, Chicago police say

The mass shooting is the second one to take place in Chicago Wednesday. About 12 hours earlier. five people were injured in West Garfield Park. Activists blame the proliferation of illegal weapons and a lack of conflict resolution skills for the escalating violence.

"That's something we're continuously fighting, by walking and canvassing the community," Phillips said. "Getting guys to understand there's a better way."

Chicago police are still searching for the suspects. Father Pfleger pleaded with the community to speak up.

"If you don't want to talk to police, talk to us," he said. "Talk to somebody because if you allow people to shoot and kill to stay on the streets, and not say anything, then you're a co-conspirator. Understand that the next person to be shot or killed by that person, their blood is on your hands, too."

Pfleger is calling for more planning and a declared state of emergency on gun violence in Chicago.