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updated: 4/28/2014 4:23 PM

Chicago woman caught in gang crossfire

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  • Leonore Draper

      Leonore Draper

 
Associated Press

woman who was shot to death after attending a fundraiser for an anti-violence group was apparently caught in rival gangs' crossfire and was not the intended target, Chicago Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said Monday.

At a news conference to discuss the number of seizures of illegal guns in the city, McCarthy would not elaborate on the investigation into Friday's death of 32-year-old Leonore Draper.

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Draper was shot in the chest and in the arm as she was getting out of her car near her home on the city's South Side. She had just returned from a fundraiser for a teen anti-violence group called Project Orange Tree, which was formed last year by students at King College Prep after classmate and honor student Hadiya Pendleton was shot and killed blocks from President Barack Obama's Chicago home.

Draper was one of four people who died in shootings over the weekend in which more than 30 people were injured in Chicago -- the third consecutive weekend that 30 or more were wounded.

Draper's family members issued a statement late Sunday echoing what McCarthy has said at his weekly news conferences, Monday's included: It is far too easy for criminals to get their hands on illegal firearms.

"We mourn for Leonore and the many victims of violence whose lives have been negatively impacted by the actions of morally depraved persons, many of whom have easy access to firearms sold by unchecked gun brokers throughout the country," her family said.

The family also called on community leaders to "create new and support existing programs that help steer young persons and others away from the life style that is causing so much havoc in our city."

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