Hundreds of people smashed windows, looted shops and clashed with police in the early hours of Monday in Chicago’s business district and other parts of downtown. Authorities did not specify how many arrests were made.
For the moment, the police were limited to reporting that there was a shooting, for reasons not yet identified, that did not result in injured officers. However, a young man was hit by a bullet in the Englewood neighborhood, sparking chaos and increasing violence.
Along the Magnificent Mile, the city’s main shopping district, was seen people going in and out of stores carrying shopping bags full of merchandise, as well as in a bank, reported the Chicago Tribune. In addition, several graffiti with anti-police messages.
An officer was seen collapsing against a building, several arrests were made and a stone was thrown at a police vehicle, according to the newspaper. Police worked early Monday to disperse the crowd.
“Absolute chaos in downtown Chicago”, Described Ryan Baker, local presenter of the chain CBS. In social networks there were several videos of looting in stores such as Nordstrom, Walgreens, Macy’s, Coach, Gucci and Louis Vuitton. They also entered a shopping center and a Tesla store.
Other commentators linked the events to the Black Lives Matter movement, but it was not an organized protest.
In the first shooting in Englewood, police said in a statement that they responded around 2:30 p.m. Sunday to a call about a person with a weapon and attempted to confront someone matching their description in an alley. He fled the officers on foot and shot the officers, according to the official report. Officers returned fire, wounded him, and a weapon was recovered, police said. He was taken to a hospital for treatment and three officers involved were also taken to a hospital for observation, the statement said.
More than an hour after the shooting, police and witnesses said a crowd confronted police after someone reportedly told people that the police had shot and injured a child. That crowd finally dispersed.
After midnight, the crowd took over the streets of the city center.
Chicago is one of the cities most affected by the increase in violence that affects several American cities. In the first seven months, there were 440 homicides and 2,240 gunshot wounds, according to statistics released Saturday, a notable rise from 290 homicides and 1,480 shootings for the same period in 2019.
(With information from AP)