This weekend, two Chicagoans were shot and killed while 15 others were wounded as the city continues to suffer from non-stop gun violence.
According to The Chicago Sun-Times media wire, Telkia Burns, 33, was fatally shot Sunday afternoon during a robbery near his South Chicago home. Burns was in the vestibule of a building when the robber walked up, displayed a gun and demanded his belongings. The two scuffled, and Burns was shot in the head. He died at John H. Stroger Hospital roughly an hour after he was shot.
Just after midnight that same day, 14-year-old Lavander Hearnes was shot about a block from a Chicago Public Schools “Safe Passage” route—a pathway intended to provide students with a safe route to and from school. He was shot in the chest and died at Mt. Sinai Hospital at where he died at 9:04 a.m.
There’s been a bit of controversy recently about the effectiveness of the Safe Passage program as the school year begins in Chicago. According to The Huffington Post, the Chicago Teachers Union is questioning how committed the district will be to the program beyond the first week of school.
“We’re skeptical that the Board is gonna be able to protect the kids in all of these routes for the whole entire school year, and the school years to come. So that’s a concern,” Norine Gutekanst, the coordinator of organizing for the Chicago Teachers Union, told WBEZ.
Monday morning, the city's top cop, Supt. Garry McCarthy told The Chicago Tribune he was pleased to see parents and community members posted along the routes for the first day of school.
"Today is, for lack of a better term, it's opening day," McCarthy said "I'm really pleased with what I'm seeing as far as who's out on the routes," adding, "If this were a football game, it's the first quarter...It's starting off well and we feel good."