Chicago gun violence at 4-year low, police say

Chicago shootings at 4-year low

CHICAGO (WLS/CNN) – The Chicago Police Department announced a citywide four-year low in shootings for the first half of 2019.

But those figures come on the heels of a violent weekend, and police are warning the reduction in crime doesn’t mean they can celebrate just yet.

"Now, though we're making progress, we still need to do much more to create a culture of accountability for gun offenders,” said Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson.

In 2016, during the first half of the year there were more than 1,900 people shot. So far this year, that number has been reduced to just over 1,200.

Police said the number of murders has also dropped. The number of people murdered in the first half of 2016 stood at 329, while that number is 236 so far this year.

Johnson said while he supports the bail bonds system, raising amounts for gun offenders would help bring those numbers down even lower.

“A hundred dollars is obviously not enough, but I would say if we get it into the thousands, $4,000 or $5,000, for them to have to come up with every time they get caught, they think twice, because I know I don’t have $4,000 in my pocket,” he said.

Despite the lower statistics, Chicago still experienced a very violent weekend: more than 50 people were shot, four of whom died.

On Monday morning, CPD announced a new crime prevention initiative called Gun Stat, in which police, prosecutors, the mayor’s office and parole and probation will start monitoring and analyzing the cases of some of the city’s worst gun offenders.

"So, we'll monitor that individual from beginning to end to see what consequence and how effective that consequence is for that particular individual," Johnson said.

Chicago Police also say they’re trying to raise funding for technology that gives detectives quick access to video and cellphones.

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