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At least 23 shot, 1 fatally, during a Juneteenth celebration near Chicago

Investigators look over the scene of an overnight mass shooting at a strip mall in Willowbrook, Ill., Sunday, June 18.
Matt Marton
/
AP
Investigators look over the scene of an overnight mass shooting at a strip mall in Willowbrook, Ill., Sunday, June 18.

Updated June 18, 2023 at 2:47 PM ET

At least one person was killed and 22 others were wounded after gunfire erupted during a Juneteenth celebration in a Chicago suburb on Sunday just after midnight.

Officials said the celebration started around 6:00 p.m. local time, and police were in the area monitoring the scene.

Around 12:25 a.m. local time, police officers in Willowbrook, Ill., responded to sounds of gunshots coming from the parking lot of a strip mall, the DuPage County Sheriff's Office said in a statement on Sunday afternoon.

"A peaceful gathering in celebration of Juneteenth turned suddenly violent last night," the sheriff's office added.

Officials said multiple weapons fired multiple rounds into the crowd. No suspects have been arrested and police are still investigating the motive for the attack. Detectives are still in the process of interviewing all the victims and witnesses, as well as reviewing camera footage from the area.

Gunshot victims were rushed to multiple area hospitals. The sheriff's office added that some people were also injured while attempting to flee the area.

Loyola University Medical Center treated a total of four victims, one of whom remains in the hospital, Carol Eggers, a spokeswoman for the hospital, told NPR.

Businesses near the scene will remain closed until further notice, the sheriff's office said.

The eruption of gunfire was one of at least 11 mass shootings nationwide this weekend, raising this year's total to 309, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which defines a mass shooting as an incident in which four or more people are shot or killed, excluding the shooter. Gun violence has killed nearly 20,000 people so far this year, according to the organization's tracking data.

In St. Louis, one person was killed and nine others were woundedon Sunday around 1:45 a.m. local time. In In Decatur, Ga., five people were shotoutside a nightclub also on Sunday early morning.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Juliana Kim
Juliana Kim is a weekend reporter for Digital News, where she adds context to the news of the day and brings her enterprise skills to NPR's signature journalism.
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