CHICAGO (CBS) — Police on Sunday were cheering another drop in violent crime – with August having closed out with a 15 percent decrease in overall violent crime compared with August of last year.
But as CBS 2’s Lauren Victory reported, the celebration may be short-lived.
Two hours into the beginning of September, another Chicago family fell victim to gun violence. A 15-year-old boy sitting on the sidewalk one minute in the West Side’s Austin community was gone the next minute.
Police said the boy died in the 5100 block of West Washington Boulevard, shot in the leg and back.
Investigators searched for a reason why as they combed the scene in the rain. But as of Sunday night, detectives still were not sure what happened to Davontae Jackson.
Unfortunately, that was one of seven shooting scenes across the city before sunrise on Sunday.
A shooting also left a man dead and another man wounded early Sunday morning in the 6100 block of South St. Lawrence Avenue. Another shooting in the wee hours left a man dead and a man wounded in the 5100 block of South Pulaski Road.
Shootings also left victims injured in the 3300 block of West Washington Boulevard, the 1200 block of North Avers Avenue, the 3200 block of West 66th Street, and the 1900 block of West Ogden Avenue before daybreak Sunday, police said.
Altogether, shootings this weekend had left seven people dead and 31 more wounded through Monday evening. A woman was also stabbed to death.
In an incident on Saturday evening, two men were killed and three other people were injured in a shooting on a front porch in the 7100 block of South Paulina Street, in the West Englewood neighborhood.
A 32-year-old man died at University of Chicago Medical Center after suffering gunshot wounds to the chest and thigh. A 26-year-old male sustained a gunshot wound to the chest and was transported to the hospital in critical condition. He later died of his wounds, police confirmed.
A man was also shot Sunday evening in the park of Humboldt Park. Just after 7 p.m., the man was shot in the leg in the 1400 block of North Luis Munoz Marin Drive and was taken to Mount Sinai Hospital in good condition. A person of interest was being questioned late Sunday.
But at least there is some positivity on the horizon, given that police say August 2019 ended with the lowest number of murders and shootings of all the Augusts since 2011 – eight years.
Some districts in the city broke or tied their violent crime records from 1999. Compared with last August, homicides overall dropped 23 percent, shootings 19 percent.
Police hope to continue the trend of crime reduction while increasing the cases they solve. Earlier in August, they announced a pilot program with Samsung to help investigators collect evidence – including surveillance from private homes and businesses.
“Footage from these cameras can be fed directly to these new devices, allowing officers to be better prepared when they arrive on scene,” police Supt. Eddie Johnson said on Aug. 21.
But that is only in one of 22 police districts for now.
In the short term, 1,000 extra officers are patrolling the streets at night, since the CPD unfortunately expected a busy and tragic holiday weekend.
Police said other serious crimes, including robberies and car thefts, are also down.
They credit the work of community organizations and other outreach groups.