If it feels like we’re seeing and hearing about more and more expressway shootings in the Chicago area lately, then your hunch is right. As CBS 2’s Jermont Terry reported Thursday night, the stretch of I-57 in Cook County is leading the way.
BRAD EDWARDS: Tonight, a driver in critical condition after getting shot in his car along Interstate 57 near Halsted. Just one of dozens of shootings on Chicago-area expressways this year. CBS 2's Jermont Terry digging into the startling numbers tonight. Jermont.
JERMONT TERRY: Brad, if it feels like we are seeing and hearing about more shootings along the expressway, then your hunch is right on. And this stretch of I-57 adding to the violence.
2021 is shaping up to be dangerous for drivers around Chicago. In the first four months, Illinois State Police reports 59 expressway shootings. Consider this. There were only 22 in the same time period last year. Yet 2020 ended with 128 people shot while riding in a vehicle. That's a 40% jump from 2019, when we saw a total of 52 shootings.
2019 is the same year Tamara Clayton was killed while riding along I-57 near 167th Street. Clayton's family has been vocal demanding answers, even taking their plea to billboards looking for the gunman. The family supports the $12.5 million efforts to get cameras and software installed to record, not just watch the expressways. The morning insiders have reported extensively on stalled attempts to get the project moving. It's already two years behind.
Clayton's family telling me they're saddened by the additional shootings, like this one Thursday morning near Halsted and I-57. This shooting marked the sixth time this year someone was shot on I-57. Last year, 25 people were injured along the interstate stretching into the south suburbs. But CBS 2 notes ISP does not include incidents happening on entrance and exit ramps in this data, so the numbers are even higher. Clayton's family tells me people must remember these are not just numbers, but individuals and multiple families impacted by gun violence while simply driving.
As for those cameras, what recording capabilities, we're told that there's less than 30% up and operating along the expressways. The installation is underway, but it's a slow process. Reporting live along I-57 near 103rd, Jermont Terry, CBS 2 News. Irika?
IRIKA SARGENT: Jermont, thank you.