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Wicker Park, Bucktown, West Town

Wicker Park Shooting At Busy Milwaukee Avenue Intersection Leaves Man Dead, 4 Wounded

The drive-by shooting comes as officials struggle to contain public drinking and partying in the neighborhood. "Somehow Milwaukee Avenue became the hottest club in Chicago," one resident said.

A cyclist rides along Milwaukee Avenue at the intersection of Damen, Milwaukee and North avenues in Wicker Park on June 3, 2021.
Colin Boyle/Block Club Chicago
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WICKER PARK — One person was killed and four others were wounded in a shooting early Sunday morning near the heart of Wicker Park.

Police said the incident occurred around 3:42 a.m in the 1500 block of North Milwaukee Avenue when shots were fired from a “dark-colored vehicle.”

A 32-year-old male was shot in the chest and later pronounced dead at Stroger Hospital.

Four others were wounded and were in stable condition Sunday, according to police.

Police had no updates Monday morning, and said Area 5 detectives are investigating.

Wicker Park resident Alma Wieser was at Heaven Gallery, 1550 N. Milwaukee Ave., Sunday morning, where she works. At first, she said she wasn’t sure if she was hearing gunshots or fireworks, until a woman started screaming on the street.

“I just saw her screaming and trying to get people to help her, and then the police came, the ambulances came, I saw them take away two bodies into the ambulances,” Wieser said. “It was just kind of chaotic because everyone just didn’t know what was going on, there were a ton of people in the streets.”

Sgt. Michael Edens of the Shakespeare Police District said officers responded to the shooting following a nearby carjacking, which was reported about 20 minutes earlier in the 1700 block of North Damen Avenue.

Ald. Daniel La Spata (1st) did not respond to a request for comment Monday, but wrote on Twitter Sunday that his “office is aware of the fatal shooting that transpired last night in Wicker Park. Though many of the details are still unknown, I’m working with the 14th Police District to learn more of the facts.

“While we mourn the loss of yet another life to a senseless act of gun violence, I remain committed to working with my colleagues and all community stakeholders to achieve the peace and stability of all 1st Ward residents and for the whole of the City.”

The shooting comes as officials in Wicker Park have struggled to contain public drinking and partying in the neighborhood, especially along Milwaukee Avenue.

“It’s always been like that a little bit, but never to this extent. Once the pandemic hit, I don’t know what happened, somehow Milwaukee Avenue became the hottest club in Chicago,” Wieser said. “So it is problematic because they’re drinking and I don’t know what else. I think it just endangers everybody…they’re not going to any businesses, they’re just partying on the street.”

Credit: Quinn Myers/Block Club Chicago
A sign in Wicker Park announcing the city’s temporary overnight parking ban on Milwaukee Avenue between North and Division.

This is at least the second mass shooting on the Near North stretch of Milwaukee Avenue in the past two weeks.

Five people were wounded in a chaotic shooting near the Grand-Milwaukee-Halsted intersection in West Town Sept. 29. Police said people were driving in two cars near the 800 block of North Milwaukee Avenue when someone in one car fired shots at the other, then the drivers continued going south on Grand toward Downtown police said.

The late afternoon shooting forced passing drivers and pedestrians to quickly duck for cover.

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