Chicago mayoral candidate Gery Chico, a Democrat, recently suggested that he would sue the states of Indiana and Wisconsin in an effort to curb gun violence in his city.
During a Thursday candidate’s forum, Chico said that “we have to get these illegal guns off our streets.”
“The gang-bangers that are committing crimes with guns are out of control, and what we’re finding is that more than 60 percent of the guns used in these crimes are coming from over the border. I’ve said that if we can’t get Indiana and Wisconsin to work with us, we sue them, and that includes the Cabela’s gun shop right in Indiana—right in Hammond, Indiana. We can no longer take this,” Chico elaborated.
Those numbers stem from a 2017 Gun Trace Report conducted by the Chicago Police Department in collaboration with Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s office and the University of Chicago Crime Lab. The report found that 21 percent of firearms recovered in crimes came from Indiana, while four percent were from Wisconsin.
40 percent, however, came from within Illinois, while another five percent were from Mississippi. Additionally, the report found that two Illinois-based firearms stores produced the most guns recovered in crimes, while the Indiana-based Cabela’s cited by Chico produced the fourth most—at 1.7 percent.
Overall, the 2017 report found that 60 percent of all firearms recovered by police could be traced back to a dealer from outside Illinois. As a result, city leaders such as Chico are urging these states to pass stricter gun-control measures.
In 2015, while governor of Indiana, Vice President Mike Pence said that “blaming Chicago’s crime problems on Indiana is unfortunate and inaccurate.” His comments came in response to remarks made by former President Barack Obama, who said “there are those who criticize any gun safety reforms by pointing to my hometown as an example.”
“The problem with that argument, as the Chicago Police Department will tell you, is that 60 percent of guns recovered in crimes come from out of state. You’ve just go to hop across the border,” Obama said.
The Chicago mayoral election is scheduled for February 26 and Chico is one of 13 candidates running to replace Emanuel, who announced in September that he would not seek reelection.
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