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Chicago shooting: Toddler shot in the face

20 September 2013, 12:30

Chicago - A three-year old toddler has been shot in the face in a late night shooting on a Chicago basketball court that has left several people wounded, police say.

The Chicago Tribune newspaper reported that 12 people were shot in all, including the three-year old who one witness said was hit in the face, in the shooting on a basketball court at a South Side Chicago park.

A police dispatcher told AFP that "there were several people shot" in the incident at around 22:00 (0315 GMT Friday).

"Basically, there have been no fatalities reported and there is no one in custody at this time, the dispatcher said.

The Tribune said the wounded were being treated at area hospitals.

Three of the gunshot victims, including the child, were in serious-to-critical condition, the Chicago Fire Department told the Tribune.

Many of the victims - most of whom in their teens, 20s and 30s - were shot in extremities, with bullet wounds to arms, legs or feet.

One 24-year-old man was shot twice in the abdomen and was in serious condition, police said.

"We believe that the motive for the shooting was gang-related," said Ron Gaines, a spokesperson with the Chicago Police Department.

"At this point, detectives are out questioning witnesses trying to find out what happened," he said.

The shooting comes as Chicago struggles to stem an epidemic of gang violence that helped push the city's murder rate up 16% to 506 people last year.

Gun violence in the city has continued at a slower but still-brisk pace this year.

President Barack Obama returned to his adopted hometown earlier this year to appeal for an end to the "senseless" gun violence ravaging Chicago as he pressed for ambitious gun control measures, which so far have been stalled in the US Congress.



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