Father Pfleger hosts anti-violence march, rally in Chicago - FOX 35 News Orlando

Father Pfleger hosts anti-violence march, rally in Chicago

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CHICAGO (FOX 32 News) -

There were prayers, songs, poems and a rare public appearance Chicago's First Lady Amy Rule who joined forces with Father Michael Pfleger at an anti-violence rally and march at St. Sabina Catholic Church.

Rule embraced Hadiyah Pendleton's parents and greeted the crowd filled with families impacted by Chicago's violence.

Annette Nance-Holt's son, Blair, was a 16-year-old honor student who was gunned down 2007 on a CTA bus by a gang member.

"If we all don't step up it will be more and more parents like me standing up here and even parents that don't look like me standing up here and I don't want anyone to feel like this," says Annette Nance-Holt. "Every time I turn on the TV and I see another parent that looks like me I know it hasn't gotten better.

Though Chicago police say the crime rate is down, the shootings continue. Overnight, a 17-year-old girl was shot in the chest and arm on the 6800 block of South Wabash Avenue.

"Today is the first day of summer, public school kids are all getting out this week. Last weekend, we had a bloody weekend: 7 murdered, 36 shot," Father Pfleger said. "We have a serious issue on our hands in Chicago in terms of violence and so our purpose is saying let's not wait and shake our heads after, lets come out here tonight and call the city to Occupy our Streets."

"We'll have [police] out there every day and every night, definitely," Chicago Police Department's Lieutenant David Harris says.

Chicago police say community partnership is the key to curbing crime.

"Getting the community involved with the violence that's going on in the city with the police department, working as a partnership, events like this make it a lot easier for our job and for the citizens to feel safe," says Harris.

Chicago's murder rate is down so far this year, but the city's violence often worsens in warm weather. Forecasts call for steamy temperatures heading into the weekend.


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