A slew of weekend shootings over the weekend left at least 33 shot—with 6 dead and 27 wounded—in Chicago, where the Democratic mayor has called "defund the police" a "real political goal."
The city has averaged 13 homicides per week in the past year, compared with 10 per week in 2019, according to a local ABC affiliate. The bloody weekend was the deadliest this month.
The shootings come under the tenure of recently elected mayor Brandon Johnson, who took office in May after arguing the city should "have health professionals, not police, respond to crisis calls." He was the only candidate who did not support filling the 1,600 vacancies in the Chicago Police Department. Johnson’s predecessor, former mayor Lori Lightfoot, pushed similar soft-on-crime policies that included hiring mental health workers "to respond to 911 calls."
The City Council is set to hold a hearing titled "Treatment, Not Trauma," which aims to reform how the police respond to mental health crises.
After a violent weekend in April in which hundreds of juveniles wreaked havoc downtown, Johnson said the smashed windows and wounded bystanders were due to a lack of "spaces for youth to gather safely." The city sent "peacekeepers" into the streets to stop violence during Memorial Day weekend but subsequently charged a man wearing a peacekeeper’s vest in connection with a street scuffle.