Three students shot near Chicago high school
January 31, 2006 (WLS) -- A growing gang problem is apparently to blame for a shooting near Schurz High School Tuesday morning. Three students were shot in front of a store near the Schurz campus just before 8 a.m.
The wounds were not serious, but that doesn't undermine the seriousness of the act. What began a couple of days ago as a fistfight between rival gang members, then Monday a fight with a baseball bat and Tuesday it escalated into guns.
All three of the shooting victims are 16-year-old Schurz High School students, two a freshman, one a sophomore. Just before 8 a.m. Tuesday morning, as they walked behind a store, they were shot. One in the leg, one a graze wound in the neck, the third suffered a head wound. None of the injuries was life threatening. All three, in fact, continued on their own power to the school to get help.
Police say the shooting was gang related.
"Right now, we are looking at the gang that has been identified as being the offenders. Our gang intelligence unit and the gang officers from the 17th District are all out there trying to find the offenders," said Supt. Phil Cline, Chicago police.
The attack Tuesday is believed to be in response to other recent conflicts with rival gangs and that has upset a number of parents who came to Schurz High School Tuesday morning to take their children home.
"If they want to kill each other, let them go to Iraq. You know, if they don't want to live, then go. I want my daughter to get an education, I don't want her hurt," said Patricia Yonts, parent.
"My mom thought it would be safer to leave instead of staying with all the commotion going on," said Carlos Lopez, student.
Throughout Tuesday, police ratcheted up their presence in and around the Northwest Side high school of 2,000 plus students. They intend to continue that presence for the near future.
"These are not occurrences that happen every day here. It's a once in a blue moon thing. So I think it would be safe to send them back tomorrow," said Martha Gonzalez, parent.
No one has been charged, but police have an abundance of witnesses, about a dozen. They have been questioning them throughout the day.
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