Man killed, activist Jahmal Cole nearly struck in 2 separate Chicago shootings in Hyde Park

Congressional candidate Cole writes on Facebook he dove under car to avoid shots fired 6 blocks east
CHICAGO (WLS) -- A man was killed in a Hyde Park shooting near the University of Chicago campus Tuesday afternoon, Chicago police said.

Police said that shortly before 2 p.m. in the 900-block of East 54th Place a dark-color car pulled up alongside a 24-year-old man. A man got out of the car, pulled out a gun and demanded the 24-year-old's property.

It was not clear if the victim moved to give up his things, but the man opened fire, shooting the victim in the chest, police said. Then the shooter got back in the car and fled westbound on 54th Place.

The victim was taken to University of Chicago hospital, where he died. He has not yet been identified.
The University of Chicago released a statement Tuesday afternoon confirming the victim was a recent graduate of the college, though they did not identify him.

"This is devastating news for our entire community," the statement said in part.

The university said they are working with CPD for their investigation, and have increased University of Chicago Police Department patrols near campus.

"One of the reasons we chose this area is because we thought it was a little bit safer, relatively speaking, compared to the other areas around Hyde Park, so just to hear about this incident, yeah, it definitely scares me," said Francis Choi, graduate student.

Coming straight from a campus meeting with the federal Health and Human Services secretary, Congressman Bobby Rush said federal money is on the way to help combat and prevent such violence.

"We have to treat violence in Chicago in the same way we are treating the pandemic of the coronavirus," Rush said.

Police have not released any further description of the shooter or the car he was in. No one is currently in custody. Area One detectives are investigating.

About two hours earlier, someone fired shots from a Hyundai Sonata blocks away at 53rd Street and South Harper Avenue, according to a security alert from the University of Chicago.

No injuries were reported, but several vehicles and two businesses were damaged by gunfire, the alert said.

The Sonata had been reported stolen Monday, according to the alert.

Jahmal Cole, head of My Block My Hood My City and a candidate for congress said he was nearly struck during the 53rd Street shooting.

"IU heard 30 shots within 10 seconds, just within walking distance of here," Cole said. "A lot of windows got shot out."

Cole, who is also running for congress, said he was walking to lunch when he heard random gunshots whizzing by his ear and ran for his life.

"I want to be clear that, I am not sure if I was an intended target today or if it was a random shooting. This is how they get down nowadays. Regardless, this is unacceptable and the people of the First District deserve better," Cole said in a post on Facebook. "Today, I thought I was going to die because I saw blood coming from my neck, thinking I was shot, again. Fortunately, it was a scrape from diving under a car."

Cole said while he doesn't believe he was targeted this afternoon, he has been shot at in the past, in 2018 and in June of this year as well.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.
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