CHICAGO -- Murders this year in the Windy City are up 50 percent over last year, and an increasing number of.
Theare now launching precision raids to sweep up repeat offenders who they say are responsible for much of the , CBS News’ Dean Reynolds reports.
“The route we took is tackling them through the sale of narcotics,” said Tony Riccio, chief of the organized crime unit. “Narcotics is what funds these gangs, funds the operation. It provides them with money to buy the guns that are used to shoot at rival gange members. And in some cases, as we’ve seen now, to shoot at police officers.”
Sixty-one of the 101 people arrested early Friday were documented gang members, the police said. According to Superintendent Eddie Johnson, there are, in all, about 1,400 repeat offenders driving the violence.
“These are people that are choosing this lifestyle. So imagine if we could eliminate half of those people -- where our crime, gun violence, would be in the city of Chicago,” Johnson said.
“Until we let them know that we’re serious about it, they’re going to continue to do what they do,” he continued.
Even with this new dragnet strategy, the mayhem continued this past weekend. Malik Causey, a 14 -year-old boy, was among the eight killed. An 8-year-old girl, Jamia Barnes, was among the 49 wounded. She was shot at a vigil for Malik.
“The kids don’t even stand a chance,” said Ashake Banks, who took Jamia to the hospital. Four years ago, her own 7-year-old daughter Heaven was shot to death while she sold candy on a sidewalk.
“I had to re-live it all over again. I just couldn’t see another
baby losing their life. And I’m so sick of it,” Banks said.