Chicago saw another bloody weekend, with a total of seven homicides and five wounded in violent incidents. All seven homicides occurred on Saturday, and the victims were pronounced dead on the scene before police could respond in each case.
One of the victims was Ronnie Chambers, 34, who was shot at about 2:15 a.m. in Lawndale. Chambers, a convicted felon and alleged member of the Gangsters Disciples street gang was the youngest of four siblings who all lost their lives to gun violence. His sister LaToya, 15, and brother Jerome, 23, were both shot and killed in 2000 in the Cabrini-Green area. Carlos Chambers died five years earlier, shot by a fellow Jones Metropolitan High School student; he was 18.
Right now, I’m totally lost because Ronnie was my only surviving son,” Shirley Chambers, Ronnie’s mother, told ABC7. “What did I do wrong? I was there for them. We didn’t have everything we wanted but we had what we needed.”
A passenger riding with Chambers was also wounded in the shooting. NBC reports that Chambers had been arrested 29 times, along with multiple drug and weapons related convictions. He had recently appeared on the daytime talk show Rikki, where he considered changing his lifestyle.
Saturday’s violence also included a pair of double-homicides which occurred about 12 hours apart. Two men were killed and another left wounded when a masked man walked up to a local hamburger stand and opened fire. Later in the afternoon, 32-year-old Dimitri Buford and 16-year-old Antonio Fenner were found shot in the head in West Garfield Park.
Chicago suffered more than 500 homicides last year, and January has started up the cycle of violence once again. Last year, Chicago’s homicide rates rose by 60 percent during the first quarter of the year before slowing down by the end. With dozens of homicides already this month, authorities will be hard pressed to stop a repeat of last year’s statistics.