(Washington Insider Magazine) – Three major U.S. cities struggling to curb a surge in gun violence collectively had at least 70 people shot, 16 dead, including a 7-year-old girl, in multiple shootings this weekend, according to police.
The shootings in New York, Philadelphia and Chicago came as all three cities have seen sharp increases in the numbers of shootings in 2021.
In Chicago, at least 52 people were shot between 6 p.m. on Friday and 11:59 p.m. Sunday, nine of them fatally, according to the Chicago Police Department. Twenty-three of the shootings occurred over just a 4-hour period between 12:26 a.m. and 4:30 a.m. on Sunday, according to incident reports reviewed by ABC News.
Just before 3 p.m. on Sunday, a 7-year-old girl was killed and her 6-year-old sister was seriously wounded when someone opened fire on a parked vehicle they were sitting in the Belmont Central neighborhood on the city’s Northwest Side, police said. The 7-year-old was shot in the chest and later died at a hospital.
One resident who lives near the shooting scene said the barrage of gunfire sounded “like a machine gun going off.”
Regina Broughton told ABC station WLS in Chicago that her granddaughter, Serenity Broughton, was the child who was killed and Serenity’s little sister, Aubrey, is fighting for her life at Loyola University Medical Center in Chicago.
“I’m lost, I’m lost… I mean they were my life, my everything,” Broughton told WLS. “How do you prepare yourself for something like this? She was a beautiful child. Her spirit was beautiful, innocent, everything about her was innocent.”
Chicago police Chief of Patrol Brian McDermott pleaded for the public to help the police solve the shooting.
“To say that I am saddened and outraged would be an understatement,” McDermott said at a news conference Sunday night. “I can only hope that every resident of this city is angry, saddened and outraged as I am at this time.”
Police did not comment on a possible motive.