6 dead, 24 wounded in Chicago shooting; 2 Jews among victims

A klezmer band was playing when the shooting began. Two Jews are among the dead victims.

By Associated Press and World Israel News

At least six people died, including two Jews, and 24 were wounded in a shooting at a July Fourth parade in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park, and officers are searching for a suspect who likely fired on the festivities from a rooftop, police said Monday.

Highland Park Police Commander Chris O’Neill, the incident commander on scene, urged people to shelter in place as authorities search for the suspect, described as a white male wearing a white or blue T-shirt.

Lake County Major Crime Task Force spokesman Christopher Covelli said at a news conference that the gunman apparently opened fire on parade-goers from a rooftop using a rifle that was recovered at the scene.

Covelli said police believe there was only one shooter and warned that he should still be considered armed and dangerous. He and O’Neill described the shooting as random.

Highland Park has a sizable Jewish community. A klezmer band was playing when the shooting began.


“This morning at 10:14, our community was terrorized by an act of violence that has shaken us to our core,” Mayor Nancy Rotering said at the news conference. “Our hearts go out to the families of the victims at this devastating time. On a day that we came together to celebrate community and freedom, we are instead mourning the tragic loss of life and struggling with the terror that was brought upon us.”

Hundreds of parade-goers — some visibly bloodied — fled the parade route after shots rang out, leaving their belongings behind. As of early afternoon, ominous signs of a joyous event suddenly turned to horror filled both sides of Central Street where the shooting occurred. Dozens of baby cartridges, some bearing American flags, abandoned children’s bikes, a helmet bedecked with images of Cinderella were left behind in their haste. Blankets, lawn chairs, coffees and water bottles were knocked over as people fled.

The Midwest Israeli Consulate in the Midwest is in contact with authorities and the Jewish community.

“A day of celebration has turned into a day of tragedy. My thoughts are with the families of the victims and all the American people. Today as always, Israel stands with our American friends.”