After Chicago police officers shot a man allegedly carrying a gun on Sunday, hundreds of people swept through the city’s streets, injuring officers, smashing store windows, looting and damaging property, police officials said.
More than 100 people were arrested in the unrest, and 13 officers were injured, Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown said during a Monday morning news conference. “This wasn’t an organized protest, it was an incident of pure criminality,” Brown said.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot echoed that statement Monday morning.
“We are waking up in shock this morning,” Lightfoot said. “This had nothing to do with protected first amendment expression. … This was abject criminal behavior. …This is straight up felony criminal conduct.”
The shooting happened in the afternoon when police responded to a call of a person with a gun in Chicago’s 7th district, according to the Chicago Police Department. Officers said they tried to confront a man who matched the description of the person with the gun when police say the suspect fled and fired a gun toward officers during a foot chase.
The officers fired at the man, striking him, according to police, who said his firearm was recovered on the scene. The man, who police said was a 20-year-old with four previous arrests for burglary, child endangerment, and domestic battery, was brought to a nearby hospital in an unknown condition.
Three officers were also hospitalized for observation, according to police.
The officers involved will be placed on administrative duties, which is department protocol, and the shooting is under investigation, according to police.
Brown said “tempers flared, fueled by misinformation” about the shooting. Police started noticing social media posts encouraging looting, he said.
CPD Deputy Chief Yolanda Talley had said earlier that misinformation about the age of the man who was shot caused an emotional response from residents.
Shots were fired at police on Michigan Avenue and Lake Street, CPD spokesman Tom Ahern wrote in a tweet. Officers returned fire. No officers were injured, and it was unclear if any civilians were shot.
Four people also broke into a retail store and took a cash register and items, police said in a statement.
Police also said an officer was maced while another officer’s shoulder was injured. A CPD cruiser was damaged when someone threw a brick through its windows.
The unrest led to street closures, notably in Chicago’s Loop, the center of the city’s downtown, according to Chicago’s Office of Emergency Management & Communications.
Talley said the disruptions were “a direct response to one agitator being on the scene, getting people all worked up without having the full story,” NBC Chicago reported. During a news conference, she asked people to “take a step back” to allow a dialogue.
“We want to hear what they have to say” Talley said. “Right now, in this climate, everyone is feeling a certain way about the police, and it’s really unfair to us. It really is.”
The clashes occurred amid a spike in gun violence in Chicago this year that has hit communities of color particularly hard.
— NBC News