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People Respond: A Day Without Shooting in Chicago

For the first time in almost a year, the city of Chicago went 24 hours without a shooting or a murder on Wednesday, January 18th.

Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy made this announcement Thursday morning. He yielded the majority of the credit to the tremendous police work of the men and women of the Chicago Police Department.

By the Numbers

419 people were killed in the city of Chicago last year by a variety of weapons, mostly firearms. These numbers are down almost 11 and a half percent from 2005. 18 fewer people died in 2011 as did in 2010 and the Police hope to keep these numbers going down.

Is 24 hours without a shooting something to actually be celebrated? We asked ten residents of the City of Chicago, “What do you believe contributed to this 24 hour period happening, and how does this make you feel about the crime and safety ratings of the city of Chicago?”

Blaming the Cold

While blaming the events on a wide variety of things, the majority of individuals credited the cold for this phenomena. While this was one of the more mild winters Chicago has had, January 18th was in fact a blustery frigid day.

“It’s too cold out there to be killing anyone!” responded Henretta Smith, age 46, unemployed.

It was her understanding that if it’s too cold to be out on the streets, than there is no one to be shooting. Tim Dunne, a 34 year old barista at a Chicago neighborhood Starbucks agreed with her and He commented on how the cold might just change the weapon, not the number of murders.

“I remember some conversations with some of Chicago’s Finest that had CHA duty. They pointed out that when the weather turns this cold the shooting rate plummets but the stabbing rate goes up. Knives end up being the weapon of choice in close quarters situations,” responds Tim Dunne a 34 year old barista at Starbucks

Thoughts on Police

The Chicago Police Department was also given a fair share of the credit from a few individuals.

“The most effective deterrent to crime is better policing. Guiliani did it with New York, and every big city needs to follow his model. It works!” stated Jacob Jordan, marketing executive.

Others did not share Jordan’s praise of the police. Rather individuals such as James Clayton, a 32 year old investment banker, used this as an opportunity to shed light on the faults of the Chicago Police Department.

“CPD is an embarrassment. They arrest peaceful protesters and police as they want to, leaving the worst neighborhoods to fend for themselves. What would amaze me is if we could go a week without someone in the city leadership trampling on our rights,” stated Clayton.

Shelby Kubicki, a 28 year old Nurse at Northwestern Memorial Hospital agreed with Clayton.

“When nobody being shot to death in your city for a full 24 hours is an accomplishment, you have problems,” responded Kubicki.

Sarah Hernandez, a student at DePaul University took a totally different approach to the cause, believing that this event occurred in correlation with the shut down of Wikipedia that day in protest of SOPA.

“The lack of shooting took place at exactly the same time at the SOPA blackouts, maybe people were just more interested in that than going out,” stated Hernandez.

No matter what any one individual may credit this situation to, the city strives for more days like this hoping that Chicago may be the safest city possible.

photo credit: Daniel Schwen/Creative Commons

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The Hub Bub is a collection of articles, videos, audio, photo slideshows, interactive maps and other media produced by students enrolled in journalism courses at Loyola University Chicago's School of Communication. For more about the School of Communication, our award winning faculty, and our state of the art facilities located in the heart of Chicago, visit our website.