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article imageChicago: Another bloody weekend, at least 7 dead, 24 wounded

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By Larry Clifton     Aug 26, 2012 in Crime
Chicago - Increasingly, Chicago is gaining a reputation as the city of drive-by shootings. This weekend seven were shot dead and 24 others were sprayed with bullets in the windy city.
In a continuing spate of shootings, at least seven people died this weekend and dozens more have been wounded in the past few days, according to a 5NBCCHICAGO report.
Included in the latest killings, two assailants shot one man dead at the scene while another died at the hospital. A 17-year-old girl with them was hospitalized in serious condition in the Chatham neighborhood on the South Side, according to an nbc.com report.
The shooting happened about 1:15 p.m. in the 7900 block of South St. Lawrence Avenue, fire and police officials said.
Christopher Spraggins, 20, of the 300 block of East 76th Street, was pronounced dead at the scene while Aaron Gaithan,18, died shortly after arriving at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, according to the Cook County medical examiner's office.
Another victim was found in an SUV parked near 91st Street and South East End Avenue, which is the Calumet Heights neighborhood on the South Side. His body was discovered at approximately 3 a.m. Sunday, according to police, according to the Chicago Times.
The victim, who was declared dead at the scene, was shot in the chest among other places. He is identified as Rashad Pratt, 28, of the 9000 block of South Ridgeland Ave., according to the Cook County medical examiner's office.
At least five others were shot in the city in about a one-hour span say police, including a 24-year-old man with gang affiliation who was shot in the 4900 block of West Ferdinand Street after attending a party in the area.
At about 5 a.m., a 33-year-old man was shot in the leg in the 3600 block of West Diversey, followed moments later by the shooting of a 46-year-old woman who was hit in the leg at the 8000 block of South Manistee Avenue, said Police News Affairs Officer Laura Kubiak. She was shot by two men as they drove by in a car.
Then, a few minutes after 6 a.m., a 28-year-old woman was shot in the 1100 block of North Pulaski, followed by the shooting of a 23-year-old man in the 1900 block of South Marshall Boulevard, police said.
On Saturday, at about 6 p.m., a 22-year-old man was shot in the 2300 block of South Washtenaw Avenue while walking north from 24th Street, police said.
At about 2 a.m., Sunday, a man police say appeared to be in his 30s, was grazed in the back by a bullet in the 2300 block of South Rockwell Street in the Little Village neighborhood.
Details were not available on the other shooting victims at press time.
Last weekend was no better as Chicago police officers worked overtime to decrease violence. There were six shooting deaths in the city and more than 30 others were hurt last weekend.
Rahm Emanuel, long time aide to President Obama, is mayor of Chicago. Emanuel recently enlisted the aid of controversial Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan in curbing drive-by shootings and other gun-related violence.
Farrakhan has a long history of making anti-Semitic remarks and racially charged speeches.
“People of faith have a role to play and community leaders have a role to play in helping to protect our neighborhoods and our citizens. You cannot get there on just one piece of an anti-crime strategy,” Emanuel said.
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