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Chicago Celebrates Valentine’s Day Weekend With 20 Shootings

(REUTERS/Joshua Lott)

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Casey Harper Contributor

A bloody weekend in Chicago illustrates a disturbing trend in the city: shootings are twice as frequent this year as last year and there’s no sign it’s slowing down.

Chicago saw six homicides and at least 14 injured in shootings over the weekend, the Chicago Tribune reports. At least 365 people have been shot in the city this year, 85 fatally.

Chicago had 272 gunshot victims and 51 homicides in January, the highest total in the same month in 16 years. The city saw 29 homicides in January in 2015, and in 2014 20 murders — the total has more than doubled in two years.

The rate is so high, there were nearly two murders a day.

The Chicago Police Department (CPD) told The Daily Caller News Foundation last week they are stepping up visibility, being more aggressive in pursuing outstanding warrants and targeting high-crime areas, and working with county law enforcement to address the problem.

“While we have much more work to do, the entire Chicago Police Department is determined to keep every Chicagoan safe,” CPD Director of Communications Anthony Guglielmi told TheDCNF. “We will continue to work tirelessly on ways to stop violence, and restore accountability and trust in communities throughout the city.”

CPD has been marred by a slew of recent scandals. The Guardian reported in February of last year that the department was operating a secret site where detainees were allegedly illegally kept from their lawyers and viciously beaten.

Since then, multiple questionable police shootings have outraged locals, most notably, the death of 17-year-old Laquan McDonald. Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel tried to keep a video of McDonald’s death hidden from the public, but it was released late last year. The video shows McDonald, who is black, appearing to move away from officers as he is shot 16 times.

Since the release of the tape, protesters have called for Emanuel’s resignation.

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