CHICAGO -- In Chicago alone, there have been well over 2,500 victims of gun violence so far this year. The latest, nine-year old Tyshawn Lee, was killed Monday afternoon.
"Please, put the guns down, please," his mother, Karla Lee, pleaded. "Taking too many young lives. Please."
Tyshawn was shot multiple times in the neck and head. Police don't know yet whether he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time or actually targeted in a gang feud.
"There was an unknown number of individuals gathered in the alley prior to the shooting," said Dean Andrews, Chicago's chief of detectives. "Some type of argument or altercation ensued, which was followed by gunfire."
A police spokesman said while many in the community are helping them, the boy's father -- a known gang member -- is not cooperating.
Tyshawn wasn't the only casualty on Monday. Twenty-year old Kaylyn Pryor, just starting her career as a professional model, was murdered in a drive-by shooting while on a visit to her grandparents. A 15-year old gang member standing nearby was wounded.
With 391 murders in Chicago this year, the homicide rate is up 18 percent over a year ago -- and the victims include 40 children.
President Obama, FBI Director James Comey and Hillary Clinton have all been to Chicago in just the last week, decrying the violence that has defied answers.
Susan Johnson runs Chicago's Citizens for Change, an organization that provides support to victims' families.
"I know a parent of a six-year-old, parent of a seven-year-old," Johnson said. "There's nothing that you can tell them. All you can do is be with them."
Local churches are offering a $16,000 reward for anyone who provides information that leads to Tyshawn's killer.