At least 58 people were shot and seven were killed over the weekend in Chicago. (Joshua Lott/Getty Images)
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Following another bloody weekend in the Windy City, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson expressed his frustration over "another unacceptable violent weekend," ABC's "Good Morning America" reported.
"Everyone has to be accountable," Johnson said during a news conference Monday at the department's headquarters. "Myself, the first deputy, the mayor and his staff, our judicial partners and the community, everybody has to be accountable — especially the people that decide to pull these triggers. They don't get a pass from us. There is no pass from us."
Authorities said at least 58 people were shot over the weekend and at least six have died from their wounds, according to WBBM-TV. Johnson said the department has increased police presence by 600 officers in neighborhoods with higher crime rates, but that has not been enough to stop the violence.
The department took three persons of interest into custody, according to Johnson, adding that 83 illegal guns were removed from the streets and 29 gun-related arrests were made. Police also shut down a gathering of 68 people that may have involved illegal activities.
Johnson said the shootings are fueled by gang-related conflicts and there must be for tougher punishments from the courts.
"The truth is, and I know you all are tired of hearing me say it, but as long as we fail to create repercussions for carrying and using illegal guns or more importantly, hold repeat violent offenders accountable for their actions," Johnson said. "We're simply going to continue to have these discussions on Monday mornings."
The 59-year-old top cop told reporters that he has lived in Chicago "his entire life" and he has a clear understanding of the tensions between the black community and the police department.
"But the simple fact of it is that the police department can't do it alone," Johnson said of the department.
"These individuals that keep pulling these triggers just feel like they can continue to do it because they're getting away with it," he continued. "It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure that out. We're not splitting the atom here."
Johnson said people need to provide information to the police and the judicial system must hold them accountable. He said it's "ridiculous" and community members are "sick and tired of it and they should be."
He said it's obvious that Chicago has "way too many guns."
Johnson went on to say that people often compare Chicago to New York and Los Angeles when it comes to gun violence, "but the fact of it is they don't have the illegal gun problem in those cities that we have because we continuously fail to hold people accountable and until we do that we're going to continue seeing it."
"These individuals are showing us every day that they're not afraid to do it, and we have to ask ourselves, 'Why?' Why aren't they afraid?' The consequences of it just isn't there in aren't there in their minds," he said.
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