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- Mayor Rahm Emanuel and police superintendent Garry McCarthy at a news conference January 31. They announced that they were reassigning 200 officers to patrol because of a rising murder rate.
The city’s stunning homicide rate last year has stretched into 2013. The 42 homicides last month were the most for a January in Chicago since 2002.
The White House announced today that Michelle Obama will attend Saturday’s funeral service for one of January’s victims—Hadiya Pendleton, the 15-year-old who was shot to death nine days ago in a park not far from the Obamas’ home. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan and Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor to President Obama, also will attend the service.
Pendleton was slain in an upper-middle-class neighborhood, Kenwood, and that’s unusual. But like most of the other victims, she was young and African-American. “I know how the killings have harmed so many families in Chicago,” education secretary Duncan told the Sun-Times‘s Rick Telander earlier this week. “And now it’s gone on so long . . . How is this possible in a civilized nation?”