Chicago police say they need the public’s help in solving Tuesday night’s mass shooting in Washington Park that left two dead and at least seven injured.
The Cook County Medical Examiner’s Office identified the victims as 43-year-old Lionel Coward and 19-year-old Khalil Denny.
Authorities say two groups were in the park around 7:45 p.m. Tuesday when an argument broke out. Shortly after, dozens of shots were fired, hitting nine people.
“There are a lot of shell casings at the scene, so both groups probably fired, but we have to prove it,” the superintendent of police said. David Brown.
Police are offering a $15,000 reward for information related to the shooting. Tipsters can call 833-408-0069 and can remain anonymous.
Meanwhile, Republican gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey held a news conference in Washington Park on Wednesday afternoon to stress his stance on crime, saying he was committed to solving the problem in every neighborhood.
Bailey also lashed out at his Democratic Governor JB Pritzker, Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx.
“I’m sorry we had to be here today on such an occasion,” Bailey said. “It also breaks my heart to see what is happening in Chicago, especially what happened near here last night. Those affected by the senseless shootings in Washington Park, Garfield Park and the families of the over 500 people who have been killed in Chicago this year, I want you to know that I am fighting to end this bloodshed. I have a few questions and they are simple: Do JB Pritzker, Lori Lightfoot and Kim Foxx care?”
Some activists and others have accused Baily of exploiting the shooting for political gain and votes.
Bamani Obadele is with Acclivus, an anti-violence organization that raises awareness in the streets. They organize baseball games in the park to bring people together peacefully.
“It’s shameful,” Obadele said. “You have two dead, seven shot… He didn’t come here with a group of mental health counselors. He lives in the ivory tower downtown and talks to people on the South Side… If he wanted to impress us, pitch a tent and move to Washington Park.