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Halloween Weekend Deadliest of the Year in Chicago

The Chicago Jewish Day School was evacuated for about two hours March 7.

Continuing the increase in gun violence in the city throughout 2016, Chicago saw its deadliest weekend of the year — 17 fatally shot and 57 wounded from the afternoon of Oct. 28 to the early morning of Oct. 31, according to the Chicago Police Department’s (CPD) crime data — as people celebrated the Halloween holiday weekend and three World Series games at Wrigley Field.

More than 600 people have been killed in the city of Chicago this year, according to the most recent crime data. The last time homicides reached that number was in 2003. This past October weekend was the deadliest in more than a decade, police data showed.

Chicago has seen an increase in gun violence in 2016, with more than 3,500 shootings in the city this year. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel laid out his proposal to curb gun violence in a speech Sept. 22. Emanuel’s plan includes hiring nearly 1,000 new CPD officers and dedicating funding to youth mentoring programs.

CPD Superintendent Eddie Johnson called it a “tough weekend” for the city, but insisted that the increased police presence in Wrigleyville for the Cubs game had no effect on police presence in the South and West sides, where almost all the shootings occurred, he said in a press conference.

The Far North and Northwest sides of the city were absent of shootings, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Seven of the 17 people killed were less than 20 years old, police data showed.

The news of the shootings has some Loyola students concerned about how it could affect them.

“For me … it feels unsafe, but I never heard a gunshot in my life living in Chicago,” said junior exercise science major Stephen Chan, 23. “It feels bad for the city.”

First-year Sydney Locke said the news of the weekend’s violence makes her feel more aware of the city’s problems, rather than concern for her own safety.

“I’m just praying for the families that lost people, but I think, definitely for our city and community, it’ll put a lot of people on edge more,” the 19-year-old theology and philosophy double major said.

Commuter student Miguel Molina, 20, said he is worried about students’ safety in the wake of these shooting numbers.

“I’m a commuter, [and so] even though I don’t live in Chicago, it just concerns me that every day I go back and forth between going from home to Loyola, and I see some of the bad elements,” the sophomore communication studies major said.

News Editor

Michael McDevitt is a junior journalism major from Quincy, Massachusetts and the news editor for The PHOENIX. He started out as a news writer for The PHOENIX in 2015 and then worked as an assistant news editor in 2016. When he’s not editing stories, Michael’s probably watching “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.”