Mayor hopes youth programs will cut summer violence - KMSP-TV

Mayor hopes youth programs will cut summer violence

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

At least 14 people were hurt in shootings across the city since Friday evening, including two people critically injured when gunfire erupted near a passing ambulance -- forcing paramedics to take cover and call for help.

Two Chicago paramedics heard gunshots as they drove down Lake Street just after midnight early Saturday morning. They then soon realized they were driving right into the gunfire.

Fortunately, the paramedics were not wounded. They immediately called for backup and then stopped to treat two men; one with a gunshot wound to the head, the other was hit in the chest. Gun violence wounds young people in all areas of the city. "It's everywhere; I used to live on the South Side myself. I experienced violence everywhere, nothing different for me," Chicagoan Nathaniel Neish said.

With summer warming up, Mayor Emanuel says the city will spend more on after school programs and summer camps to give young people a safe haven. Today he announced Nike will sponsor basketball clinics in eight Chicago parks. Kids will be able to play with adult supervision, coaches, referees and police. "Yes, safe basketball," Mayor Emanuel said.

Nathaniel Neish also says that he feels safe shooting hoops at Loyola Park on the lakefront, but knows it's not so easy for young people to stay out of trouble. "Young people need to find something positive. It's hard if there's violence going on, hard to find something to do," he said.

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