Chicago Looting Sees More Than 100 Arrests and 13 Officers Injured

Chicago's Mayor Lori Lightfoot hit out at the "criminals and vigilantes" who caused mayhem on the city's streets during a period of looting which led to more than 100 arrests.

Widespread disorder erupted in Chicago during a night which saw dozens of businesses and stores ransacked and vehicles set on fire.

Footage on social media shows people filming looters as they exit stores. Some looters allegedly filmed themselves taking items and then posted the videos online. Other videos show looters ransacking buildings and breaking into banks with baseball bats.

Officers were also fired on by armed suspects on Michigan Avenue and Lake Street during the night of unrest. Chicago Police spokesperson Tom Ahern said no officers were injured in the exchange of fire and it is unknown if the suspects were hit.

Giving a press conference, Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown said more than 400 officers were dispatched to the downtown area of the city to deal with "an incident of pure criminality."

Brown confirmed that more than 100 arrests have been made, with 13 officers injured.

Brown said the "seeds for the shameful destruction" were sown in Englewood on Sunday after a group of people faced off with police over a shooting incident. Officers had shot a suspect that allegedly opened fire on them.

The shooting took place at 2:30 p.m. on Sunday, August 9 in the 5700 block of South Racine Avenue. Officers were dispatched to reports of a man with a gun and spotted a suspect matching the description.

Police say the suspect then fired at officers as they approached him in an alleyway. The suspect continued to fire as he attempted to flee on foot. Officers returned fire, striking the suspect, who was then taken to hospital in an unknown condition.

Police said the disorder broke out following false rumors about the suspect's age. Misinformation that ages the suspect at 15 has spread on social media.

Brown said that from this, people in cars made their way towards the downtown areas of Chicago and began looting. "Criminals took to the streets with the confidence that there will be no consequences for their actions and I refuse to let these cowardly acts hold our city hostage," Brown said.

He also said there would be a heavy police presence in the downtown area for the foreseeable future, with all officers' planned days off now canceled. Access to downtown parts of the city will also be restricted from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.

At the same conference, Lightfoot said that the city is "waking up in shock" this morning while condemning those responsible for the "brazen and extensive criminal looting and destruction."

"We're not going to let our city be taken over by criminals and vigilantes," the mayor said.

"This had nothing to do with legitimate first amendment protected expression. What occurred downtown and surrounding communities was criminal behavior, pure and simple, and there cannot be any excuse for it. Period."

Police officers inspect a damaged Best Buy store after parts of the city had widespread looting and vandalism, on August 10, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois.