The weekend of July 17, 2020 saw ten people murdered and seventy people wounded, including ten minors, in the city of Chicago. In response to escalating violence in the City of the Big Shoulders, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is reportedly finalizing plans to deploy 150 federal agents throughout Cook County over the coming weekend.
For a short period of time, Chicago enjoyed a crime drop as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Yet today, blood flows freely once against on the streets. A severe lack of trust between the community and local law enforcement, especially in the wake of 2020's civil unrest, continues to hinder the ability of the municipal government to respond to an ever-growing crime epidemic.
DHS is specifically preparing to deploy units and task forces from Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) to assist the Chicago Police Department (CPD) in crime prevention, although what exactly the agents will be doing remains private.
HSI has proven extremely effective in recent years, with DHS seeing a visible increase in successful cases since the foundation of the unit. More importantly, HSI has broad legal authority to enforce a wide array of federal statutes, and as such, will be a useful tool in targeting Chicago's street gangs. Specifically, HSI can effectively target some of the deadliest and most prolific criminal syndicates operating in city limits, including the Gangster Disciples, Black Disciples, Latin Kings, Black P Stone Nation, and the Vice Lords.
Over the past two years, Chicago has received national attention for its violent crime situation. Specifically, national media has focused on the city's rising homicide rate when politically expedient. Despite this increased awareness, violence has continued and little has been done to stop it. Increased federal support and assets on the ground may be the first step in healing an extremely bloodied community.
According to HeyJackass!, 375 people have been killed and 1,721 wounded due to gang warfare since the beginning of 2020.