September 30, 2023

4 shot during funeral procession near Chicago

Four people were shot and injured Saturday afternoon during a funeral procession in the Chicago area, authorities said. One person had critical injuries and another was listed as being in critical but stable condition that night, after both were admitted to a local hospital. The other two victims were treated at another hospital, where their injuries were not considered life-threatening.

The shooting took place around 1 p.m. in Oak Park, a suburban village about 10 miles from downtown Chicago, as the procession traveled from the city to a cemetery about 30 minutes north, in Des Plaines, according to the Chicago police. Oak Park.

As the procession made its way to the cemetery, a white pickup truck pulled up next to one of the vehicles and someone inside began firing guns at that car, hitting two passengers, the Oak Park village said in a press release, adding referring to law enforcement officers. The injured passengers were taken to Loyola Medical Center where they were admitted in a critical and critical but stable condition.

Police are investigating after four people were shot and injured during a funeral procession in Oak Park, Illinois, on Saturday.  /Credit: CBS Chicago

Police are investigating after four people were shot and injured during a funeral procession in Oak Park, Illinois, on Saturday. /Credit: CBS Chicago

The pickup truck then targeted a second vehicle in the funeral procession, and two passengers in that car were shot, according to the press release. Both victims sustained non-life-threatening injuries and took themselves to Rush Oak Park Hospital. Police say several shell casings have been found at the scene.

Authorities say the shooting was apparently a targeted attack, CBSChicago reported. They have not identified any suspect or suspects. Oak Park Police Chief Shatonya Johnson said in a statement that whoever carried out the shooting is unlikely to pose a greater threat to the community.

“While there is no evidence of any further threat to the community from this incident, any act of gun violence such as this one wreaks havoc on our collective sense of security,” Johnson said.

According to the police and local residents, it is not uncommon to see shootings during funerals in the Oak Park area. Tara Gerou, a business owner in the village, told CBS Chicago she was not surprised by the incident.

“This is something we talk about very often,” Gerou said. “I don’t think it’s an easy answer because we want to respect people’s ability to mourn their dead, but now when that ability interferes with our public safety in our communities, it becomes a difficult topic.”

“It was very disturbing how desensitized we might become if this is the third shooting in a while, in… about a week and a half or two weeks,” Gerou continued. “We’ve had three shootings. One in front of an elementary school where my son attends, one down the street earlier this week and what now feels way too close to home.”

Oak Park officials said in their press release that it is “standard protocol … for funeral homes to alert law enforcement agencies along the route to potentially high-risk funeral processions so that officers can assist with traffic flow and the safety of participants and the public along the route.” According to the release, no warning was shared with the police in this case.

Authorities are asking anyone with information about the shooting to report what they know to the Oak Park Police Department.

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