7 shots, 1 fatal, in Chicago during memorial for man killed in car crash

CHICAGO – A 25-year-old woman was fatally shot and six others were injured early Sunday when gunfire erupted in Chicago during a memorial for a man who was killed in a car crash, police said.

A large group of people had gathered around 1 a.m. to commemorate four years since a man’s fatal crash when an altercation broke out and gunshots rang out, Deputy Chief Adnardo Gutierrez of the Chicago Police Department said, WLS-TV reported.

Seven people were injured and one of them, a 25-year-old woman, was pronounced dead at a hospital, he said. The other six victims of the shooting were hospitalized, one in critical condition.

“They were celebrating and then something happened and there was a verbal altercation and someone started shooting, or multiple people started shooting,” Gutierrez said at a briefing Sunday.

He said that how many people opened fire is still being investigated, but he said the shots were fired by a person or people who were participating in the commemoration.

Gutierrez said a witness told officers that an altercation occurred prior to the shooting, which occurred when the group was on a street in the Austin neighborhood on Chicago’s West Side.

Among the other six victims, a 29-year-old man was hospitalized in critical condition with a chest wound. The other five, a 17-year-old girl, a 28-year-old woman and three men ages 27, 28 and 29, were hospitalized in good condition, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

Police detectives were investigating the shooting and no one was in custody as of mid-morning Sunday.

Gutierrez said detectives were still working to find and interview witnesses. He urged anyone with information about the shooting to contact police and pass on that information.

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson began his first term as head of the nation’s third-largest city. Johnson struck a positive tone in his inaugural address after being sworn in Monday, even as he faces an influx of immigrants in desperate need of shelter, pressure to build support among skeptical business leaders and the summer months that historically bring a surge in violent crimes. The former union organizer’s ability to turn many progressive proposals into solutions will be put to the test immediately. Public safety, citywide economic growth and housing affordability top his list of priorities.