Chicago officers shot amid national rise in gun violence

U.S.

CHICAGO (NewsNation Now) — Gun violence is up across America and many of those shootings include the people sworn to protect us.

In Chicago, two police officers were shot, one killed, in an ambush during a traffic stop this weekend.

On Monday, police formally charged the 21-year-old suspect in officer Ella French’s killing with first degree murder and attempted murder. Her partner is in critical condition.

“There are some who say we do not do enough for the police and that we are handcuffing them from doing their jobs,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot said. “There are others who say we do too much for the police and that we never hold them accountable for what they do, particularly in Black and brown neighborhoods. All of this, I say, stop. Just stop.”

Federal prosecutors say the gun used in French’s murder was purchased in Indiana on the suspect’s behalf. That buyer now faces a felony charge and up to 5 years in prison.

The supect’s brother also faces obstruction of justice and weapons charges.

This is just the latest in violence against officers in the past few days across the country.

On Thursday in Colorado, an officer was shot three times just seconds after exiting his vehicle. He was responding to a theft.

In Texas, four officers were shot, one killed, by a man barricaded inside a home.

In La Habra California, an officer was shot in front of a police station stemming from a road rage incident.

In Kentucky, a deputy was ambushed while sitting inside his security vehicle without provocation. Whoever killed him is still on the loose.

According to the Fraternal Order of Police, there have been 52 ambush style attacks on law enforcement officers from January to July 31, 2021. That’s a more than a 126% increase from last year.

The FOP describes ambush style as a shooting that comes without warning, where the officer has no opportunity to defend themselves. 

Overall, this year is on pace to see more officer deaths from gunfire. At least 35 officers have been shot and killed this year, which is just nine shy of the total in 2020.

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