Authorities said at least 100 people were arrested in Chicago at night after looting and violence swept the streets, injuring several police officers.
Thirteen officers were injured, including a sergeant who was attacked by a bottle, and at least two civilians were killed during the unrest as hundreds swept through the upscale Magnificent Mile shopping district in the city and surrounding areas. Vandalism and violence, authorities said.
Authorities said the suspects face several charges including looting, police beatings and disorderly conduct. Chicago Police Chief David Brown said investigators were also looking for the suspects who shot the police
“In one incident, officers were arresting a suspect who was carrying a cash record that he had stolen from a store,” Brown said. “While the officers were making the arrest, another car passed by the officers and the officers were shot, as their car turned over in the corner, leading to an exchange of fire between the officers and the suspects. A bullet was found hidden in the cage of a police car.”
The officers were not injured by the shooting.
Chicago Mayor Laurie Lightfoot said she has implemented a community protection program – lockdown with heavy police presence – that will be in effect “for the expected days so we know our neighborhoods are safe.”
Lightfoot said the criminal activity had nothing to do with the “legitimate” organized protests, describing them as an “assault on our city.”
“These individuals have participated in what can only be described as rude and widespread criminal looting and destruction. To be clear, this has nothing to do with the legitimate and protected expression of the First Amendment,” Lightfoot said.
Investigators said the unrest erupted Sunday afternoon due to inaccurate reports online of police shooting an unarmed juvenile in the Englewood area. Authorities said the victim was in fact a 20-year-old man who had allegedly opened fire on the police while on his pursuit.
“The nerves were blown by the disinformation as the afternoon shifted into the evening,” Brown said. “CPD has become aware of several social media posts promoting looting of the city center.” “The officers were dispatched to our downtown area as soon as we got on the news of our social media posts. Four hundred officers were sent to the city center.
Much trouble has occurred along the Magnificent Mile, one of the city’s most popular tourist attractions, with thieves being seen stuffing vehicles with shopping bags full of stolen goods and storage equipment.
ATMs were hacked, cash records were stolen and at least one bank was broken into, according to the Chicago Tribune.
City officials said residents should expect a heavy police presence in the city center until further notice. Lightfoot said the city was still “working on the details” of an imminent closure that could include closing some bridges and highways.
“We are working on the details now,” Lightfoot told reporters. We are looking at bridges. But we want to make sure clearly that people who work and live in the city center have easy access to the downtown area.