Fifteen injured in shootout at Chicago funeral as city reels from surge in gun violence

“We thought it was a war out here," a neighbor said after a car opened fire during a funeral and mourners fired back.

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By Tim Stelloh

Fifteen people were wounded in a shooting at a Chicago funeral home Tuesday as the city reels from a recent surge in gun violence, authorities said.

One person was in custody, Chicago Police First Deputy Superintendent Eric Carter told reporters Tuesday night.

Police initially said 14 people were injured in the shooting, but in an update on Wednesday morning said that an additional person had been wounded. The victims ranged in ages from 21 to 65, with most hospitalized in good condition.

Six of the victims were taken to various hospitals in serious conditions, according to police. A 65-year-old woman was treated at the scene.

Carter said the shooting, in the city’s Auburn Gresham neighborhood, occurred after a speeding black car opened fire on funeral attendees Tuesday evening. People at the funeral returned fire before the car sped away and crashed, Carter said. The people in the car then fled in different directions.

Carter didn’t say who the funeral was for, and a motive remained unclear.

A neighbor told NBC Chicago that she saw “bodies laying everywhere.”

"Shot up everywhere, all over,” the neighbor said. “We thought it was a war out here."

The shooting occurred amid a spike in gun violence that has hit minority communities already struggling through the coronavirus pandemic. At least 70 people were shot in the city over the weekend, and another 25 people were struck by gunfire Monday, according to NBC Chicago.

Tensions between authorities and protesters also escalated after they accused one another of violence during an effort to topple a Christopher Columbus statue Friday night.

President Donald Trump injected himself into the fray by appearing to threaten to send federal agents to Chicago and other cities where he said “local pols are just fine with 50 days of anarchy.”

“Under no circumstances will I allow Donald Trump’s troops to come to Chicago and terrorize our residents,” Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot responded Tuesday.

Amid weeks of sometimes heated demonstrations in Portland, Oregon, that city’s mayor said there appeared to be “dozens, if not hundreds” of federal troops there responding to protesters. Video showed federal agents who weren’t clearly identified using non-lethal weapons and hauling them into unmarked vans.

“What they're doing is, they are sharply escalating the situation," Mayor Ted Wheeler said.

Trump said the administration was “trying to help Portland, not hurt it.”

Minyvonne Burke contributed.