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Illinois State Police Increases Presence Following Multiple Expressway Shootings

CHICAGO (CBS) -- Multiple shootings have resulted in only a few arrests, and now, Illinois State Police (ISP) are out in force standing by as Chicago expressway shootings keep happening.

CBS 2's Steven Graves looked for answers Saturday as to how the increased presence will help decrease the number of shootings on expressways.

These shootings are hurting and killing people. One of the main goals is to solve these cases by beefing up patrols. But now - the police say that can be difficult.

Three Chicago area expressway shootings in four hours. That's the latest spree seen earlier this week - enough for Illinois State Police to step up patrols.

"This is the greatest need right now because the rate of violence we're seeing occurring on the expressways," said ISP Dir. Brendan Kelly.

The latest count - 185 shootings this year - already surpassing the past two year's totals. Out of those shootings - only nine arrests were made.

Increased trooper presence started Friday night. Dir. Kelly said the measures are to help reduce violence and aid in solving cases.

"The degree of difficulty in these cases is unique because of the transient nature and how it's all spread out and how it's in motion," Kelly said.

In addition to increased patrolling - state police are working on installing 200 license plate readers. Those are funded by a $12.5 million grant - the devices are meant to help in more ways than one.

"It's also to find witnesses. It's not just to find the bad guy. It's also to see who might have been driving through and being able to reach out to them," Kelly said.

Until all readers are installed - that 157% increase in trooper presence has no current end date.

An exact number of additional patrol cars and officers was not given for safety reasons. But we do know help is coming into Chicago from across the state.

Now - the Dan Ryan is listed as the most dangerous expressway with a total of 56 shootings recorded there.

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