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Chicago Reaches 435 Murders in 2012

By Adeshina Emmanuel | October 29, 2012 10:30am | Updated on October 29, 2012 2:16pm
 Chicago police.
Chicago police.
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(File photo)

CHICAGO — A fatal shooting in Roseland Sunday night marked a morbid milestone for the city this year: it was the 435th murder, which matches last year's total with about two months to spare in 2012.

Fitz Bariffe, a 68-year-old South Side man, was found unresponsive in his home about 11 p.m. with a gunshot wound to the chest, police said. Bariffe was pronounced dead on the scene at 12:25 p.m., according to the Cook County Medical Examiner's office.

The Tribune reported that the murder happened during a home invasion, but police at the scene would not confirm the scenario. Bariffe was one of six people killed in shootings during the past weekend.

Police spokeswoman Maureen C. Biggane confirmed via email Monday morning that Chicago's murder tally stood at 435. Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said that the numbers were disappointing, and expressed concern that "this is going to overshadow the progress that we're making," according to NBC Chicago.

"You can't manage murder. One murder is too many, and if we ended the year with 400, that's 400 too many," McCarthy said.

Despite the grisly figures this year, McCarthy and Mayor Rahm Emanuel have touted the city's success in cracking down on the street gangs that they say are to blame for many of Chicago's murders.

McCarthy recently announced the installation of "ShotSpotter" — gunshot detection technology that will cover portions of the Englewood, Chicago Lawn, Harrison and Grand Crossing police districts.

In March, the city's top cop established “gang audits” to provide a central source of data regarding gang membership, and police said the audit identified more than 600 gang factions in the city.

On Monday, Emanuel's office said in a statement that 200 city buildings have been demolished as part of an initiative to destroy vacant buildings that attract crime and gang activity.

The 200th building, at 13 East 113th Street in Roseland, was one of numerous buildings in the community to be destroyed since July.