Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel Plans New Anti-Gang Violence Push - FOX 32 News Chicago

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel Plans New Anti-Gang Violence Push

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Next Wednesday, it'll be exactly one year since Rahm Emanuel took the oath of office as Mayor of Chicago. The surprising surge in shootings and killings has been a setback, but he said he will soon unveil a new gang strategy. And he said he's delivered progress on 91 percent of the goals set forth in his transition team's report; with a nod to Austin Powers, he said that's been good for Chicago's "mojo."

"I think our challenges were here and our city, for whatever reason, had kind of lost its mojo," Emanuel said. "And I think we have our mojo back, that none of our challenges are bigger then us."

No challenge has been tougher during Emanuel's first year than controlling the gang-related street violence afflicting almost one-third of the City of Chicago. Early each morning, he personally reviews the previous day's often-grim statistics and, when there's a clearly innocent young victim involved, he reaches out to the devastated family.

"It's very hard. Looking at that thing every morning is hard. Calling a parent and letting 'em know they're not alone is very, very hard. But I think it's a responsibility to speak on behalf of the city. And to care for them. There's a parental piece of this. And then there's my job as mayor. And both count when you talk to them," Emanuel said.

He acknowledged that homicides are up, but almost 90 percent are gang-on-gang violence.

"And there are kids, innocent kids caught in that crossfire," he said. "We'll be laying out a clear piece of an anti-gang strategy, because we have a unique gang problem in this city that other cities don't have.

"But I think once again the city has a confidence that we can handle this. And that we know what our priorities are, that we are focused on our priorities. And we're ready to be held accountable to getting results," he said.

Each of the 55 goals laid out in his Transition Team report was ultimately related to bringing jobs and growing prosperity to Chicago.

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