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Chicago mayor blames disinvestment, Republicans after violent weekend

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(The Center Square) – Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson says he is not changing his vision for public safety after a violent weekend in the city.

More than 100 people were shot in Chicago from Thursday, July 4, through Sunday, July 7. Nineteen of those people died. Johnson said the violence did not happen in a vacuum.

“We are standing here today talking about a violent weekend because of generations of disinvestment and deep disenfranchisement in the exact communities where so much of the violence is taking place,” Johnson said.

Johnson also blamed the Republican party.

“You have an entire political party that is protecting a lobbyist entity to make sure that illegal guns can flow through the streets,” Johnson said.

The mayor said the GOP should be brought up on charges. Chicago has not had a Republican mayor since William Hale Thompson left office in 1931.

For the city’s police department, the last two weekends have been even busier than usual.

Chicago Police Superintendent Larry Snelling said police cannot be in everyone’s home or backyard.

“When we look at what happened this weekend, we always like to say it’s a police issue. This is a societal issue,” Snelling said.

After the city’s Pride parade on the North Side the previous weekend, police arrested 53 people and recovered at least five guns. Several of the arrests were for aggravated battery of a peace officer.

Snelling said parade goers were not the ones responsible for the violence.

“Those were people who went into that neighborhood and decided that they were going to commit acts of violence, vandalism, things of that nature. Our officers were ready to deal with that,” Snelling said.

According to CWBChicago, the Pride parade has generated seven of the 10 highest arrest totals for single day events in Chicago since 2013.

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