CHICAGO (CBS) — One woman was killed and nine people were wounded overnight in a mass shooting in the Chatham neighborhood.
Police are looking for two shooters they say are responsible for killing that 29-year-old in the Chatham neighborhood just after 2 a.m., leaving the community reeling when the sun came up.READ MORE: Jussie Smollett Trial: Defense Attorney Calls For Mistrial And Accuses Judge Of Lunging At Her; Judge Denies Claims And Motion
“I looked down, and next thing I know I hear a ‘bop bop bop’ and looked up at the crowd and saw people scattering,” witness Eboni Watson said. “Then I seen like two people hit the floor.”
Watson caught the shooting on camera during a Facebook live she started seconds before the first shot went off. She said this time last year she herself was the victim of a drive-by shooting.
“At that moment I just thought about when I got shot, and when I got shot I covered up a child. So my instant thing was to make sure that baby was safe, but this time I’m not going to lie I didn’t think about nobody else. It was more so my sake.”
CBS 2’s Marissa Parra spoke to Chatham business leaders, who are still recovering from the pandemic. So to then add this trauma was pretty devastating.
But business owners in Chatham said they were determined to find a way to reclaim the narrative, and show the other side of Chatham – one of solidarity.
At Brown Sugar Bakery on Saturday, one customer ordered two cakes, saying, “I also wanna say the magic word, ‘peace.’”
The magic word was chosen by design.
“You take the negatives and turn it to a positive,” said Eddie Elkhatib, who runs A&S Beverages, a business on the same Chatham block as Brown Sugar Bakery.
The popular bakery’s founder, Stephanie Hart, described Chatham as “a community that is often overlooked.”
But all eyes were on Chatham overnight after a mass shooting, leaving one person dead and nine others wounded near 75th and Prairie.
Police said the victims were standing on the sidewalk, when two gunmen walked up and started shooting.
A 29-year-old woman, identified as Kimfier Miles, was shot in the abdomen and knee, and was pronounced dead at University of Chicago Medical Center, according to police and the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office.READ MORE: Officer Carlos Yanez Attends Hearing Of 2 Men Accused Of Shooting, Paralyzing Him And Killing Partner Ella French
The other nine victims included eight men and one woman, ranging in age from 23 to 46. All nine were in either fair or good condition, and were being treated at five separate hospitals.
The details behind what appears to have been an after-hours mass gathering were still hazy on Saturday afternoon, but when Hart woke up to news of another trauma Saturday morning, she said, “I’m gonna go have a piece of cake for peace.”
Together, Hart and Elkhatib conspired to share that message of peace with everyone else in Chatham.
“Say peace, and guess what happens when you say ‘peace’? You get a cupcake!”
The message and the sugary canvas it’s painted on were aimed towards comfort.
“That’s how my grandmother loved on me,” Hart said, “You know, your grandmother gives you a cookie, she gives you a piece of cake, she kisses you on the forehead, and you feel better.”
A small gesture in the wake of another tragedy with a big emotional impact.
“I’m hoping this piece of cake makes people feel better, makes people encouraged,” Hart said. “They say things change a bite at a time, so I just want people to think about something a little different today.”
If you missed the “Piece of Cake for Peace” event on Saturday, the Greater Chatham Initiative said they’re planning another event with the message of keeping the peace soon.
Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th) said the gathering last night wasn’t an “official” gathering, calling it “unacceptable.”
“At 2am early Saturday morning, we received news that 10 people were shot in Chatham. This is a tragedy. Right now, I am praying for the victims and families at this time. Let me be clear, these attacks on 75th Street or, anywhere in our communities, are unacceptable. We have been working hard to rebuild 75th Street as a thriving business corridor, and the community is committed to this vision. These past nights will not undo years of hard work and business development. These are the actions of a few; who were not patronizing the businesses. I am committed to continued investment in violence prevention methods and ensuring our communities are safe. Once again, my prayers are with the victims and their families of last night.”
CBS 2 has been reporting on unofficial gatherings that have turned violent throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Now that the state has reopened and people are out, Watson hopes the problem does not continue to get worse.MORE NEWS: Robert Quinn, First Bears Player Named NFC Defensive Player Of The Month In 2 Years
“Is it a gang thing? Is it a respect thing? Or is it a someone stepped on your Air Force Ones thing? Like what is it? What’s the purpose of doing all this you’re taking an innocent life for something stupid?” she said.