Gunfire broke out in cities across the US during Independence Day celebrations, leaving dozens of people injured and at least 14 dead.
According to Daily Mail, Chicago appeared to experience the worst of the violence on Saturday as 30 people were shot and eight were killed, including two children.
New York City, Memphis, Omaha, Cleveland and several other cities were also rocked by a spate of shootings amid the holiday revelry.
One of the children killed in Chicago was identified by her family as seven-year-old Natalie Wallace.
The girl was playing outside her grandmother’s house in the city’s Austin neighborhood during a Fourth of July party when a vehicle pulled up and three men emerged and began shooting indiscriminately at about 7pm.
Natalie was shot in the head and rushed to the hospital, where she was pronounced dead, according to the Chicago Tribune.
‘Chicago’s heart is broke,’ Chicago police Chief Fred Waller said. ‘A 7-year-old girl was taken from us. She was here visiting family. Now she’s gone.’
Mayor Lori Lightfoot tweeted: ‘Tonight, a 7-year-old girl in Austin joined a list of teenagers and children whose hopes and dreams were ended by the barrel of a gun.
‘We cannot grow numb to this. We are making progress in slowing shootings, but we have to do better, every single one of us.’
Seven other people were wounded in the same Austin attack, including a 32-year-old man who is now in fair condition.
Waller said police are reviewing video of the incident and no arrests have been made.
Another shooting in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood left four people dead, including a 14-year-old boy who has not yet been identified.
Four others were wounded in that shooting, including boys ages 11 and 15.
The Tribune reported that four men stormed a holiday gathering and opened fire before fleeing the scene. They have yet to be arrested.
Three other shootings in Chicago on Saturday killed a 34-year-old woman, a 31-year-old man and a 20-year-old man, per ABC7.
Saturday marked the city’s third consecutive weekend where a child under 10 has been fatally shot.
The Chicago Police Department deployed 1,200 additional officers over the weekend with a goal of reducing violence that accompanies the holiday each year.
‘It’s not just on the police department. Not just on the fire department. Not just on elected officials,’ Mayor Lightfoot said in announcing the increased police presence.