CHICAGO (AP) — Police statistics show that nearly 15 people were shot in Chicago every day during June, including a daily average of more than two who died.
The department says there were 315 homicides in Chicago in the first six months of the year, or more than 100 more than during the same period last year.
The grim statistics come as the department announced plans to put thousands of officers on the street for the July 4 weekend that has in recent years seen a spike in gun violence. At a Friday news conference, Superintendent Eddie Johnson said there will be more than 5,000 Chicago police officers, FBI agents and Illinois State Police troopers on duty.
Johnson says residents and visitors to the city will notice an increased police presence and that officers at the city’s two airports will carry high-powered weapons.
Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson says he’s moved more than 150 officers from behind desks to the streets.
Johnson says the new assignments are part of a plan announced last September by Mayor Rahm Emanuel. That plan included 2016 budget money to hire more than 300 civilians for desk jobs so officers working those jobs can be assigned to street duty. Johnson said Thursday that the next 150 officers now on desk duty will be working the streets by the end of the year.
The reassignment is part of a larger effort to combat a surging violent crime rate. The department has been stepping up its bike and foot patrols this summer, when the number of shootings typically climbs in the city.