Authorities confirmed to The Chicago Sun-Times on Thursday that about 20 additional agents with the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives have been sent to the city.
The group, including police officers, federal agents and intelligence analysts, will work to slow the flow of illegal guns throughout Chicago and target repeat gun offenders.
The team will include an additional 20 ATF agents, who arrived in early June, according to a city official, as well as Chicago police officers, IL state troopers, intelligence analysts and state and federal prosecutors.
Crime and killings in Chicago have reached such epidemic proportions that I am sending in Federal help. His announcement aligns with previous tweets in which he called the city's murder rate "record setting" and the situation "totally out of control", noting if the "horrible "carnage" didn't subside, he'd "send in the Feds!". Chicago Police Department can not tackle this issue by itself. Despite the drop in shootings, murders have remained relatively flat compared to past year. They join 41 ATF agents already in Chicago.
"We are foundationally changing the way we fight crime in Chicago", Chicago police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said in a statement on Friday. Law enforcement officials on Friday are expected to announce a new Chicago Crime Gun Strike Force.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a Democrat, has reaffirmed that the city will maintain its sanctuary status. The Justice Department had previously said that more than 20 additional ATF agents were sent to Chicago, and a spokesman said the department was also considering reallocating prosecutors to the city. There were 1,935 shooting victims in the city during the same period a year ago.
Gun crime raged in gun-controlled Chicago to such a degree that on April 25, 2017, the Chicago Tribune reported that the Windy City passed "1,000 gunshot victims for the year".
There have been 1373 shootings this year as of Friday morning, a 12.9 percent drop from the same period in 2016.
During an interview Friday morning on Fox News, Kellyanne Conway claimed that she had not yet had an opportunity to discuss the subject of the tweet with the president.