The US state of Chicago has launched an initiative to tackle the rising gun violence in one of America’s largest cities.
The state has tasked a 50-member group of officers to crack down on the availability of guns in Chicago.
"The point of this investigations team — which is new and unique, and a first in its class — is to get the gun before it hits the streets at the trafficking level," Police Superintendent David Brown said at a news conference. "These third parties need to hear me loud and clear: We're coming for you, and we're going to try to charge you with the highest charge we can, if not in the federal system, then at the state attorney's office."
The recent spike in the number of shootings across the country has become a source of concern for many particularly since the coronavirus pandemic began.
The illegal gun market is only one of the myriad factors contributing to the situation in the Untied States today.
"Do not buy guns for violent people is our message, or you will pay the price for them by doing what we hope to be serious time," Brown added, addressing those who buy illegal guns. "Whatever they're paying you to go buy these guns ... it's blood money."
Chicago is no stranger to gun violence but like many other cities in the US it has seen a spike in crime within the past year.