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updated: 8/13/2014 9:58 PM

Shots fired in Round Lake Park likely gang-related, police say

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Round Lake Park police have issued a community alert in response to multiple gunshots being fired as part of gang-related activity Tuesday night.

Police Chief George Filenko said from five to eight shots were fired about 11:40 p.m. toward a home on the 300 block of Fairlawn Drive by someone who had been in a vehicle. No injuries were reported. Police continue to investigate, but no arrests have been made.

Initial information shows it was a gang-related action and that the intended target lives on the block, police said.

"They had a specific target. It was a house we have identified as a gang house," he said. A likely scenario was that a car drove by, words were exchanged and shots fired, he added.

Police canvassed the neighborhood to make sure no bystanders or residents were hit.

Filenko, who also heads the Lake County Major Crime Task Force, said there have been several gang-related shootings since the end of June, including a man shot in the abdomen in Round Lake Heights.

"Unfortunately, again, this is something my agency has been predicting," Filenko said.

"The problem now is we don't have a viable gang task force in Lake County," he added.

Round Lake Park has been actively targeting purported street gang members.

One method has been Operation Street Sweep, which began in Round Lake Park and neighboring towns in April 2012 involving federal and local law enforcement authorities. Local illicit drug sales and gang activity have been the focus for investigators. Filenko said his department also has been working closely with the Round Lake Beach special operations unit.

He said the community alert was issued to inform the public and ask for assistance.

"You can't continue sweeping gang and drug problems under the carpet," he said. "The community I'm sworn to serve deserves to know what's going on."

Residents are asked to report any suspicious activity by calling (847) 546-7275. The information will be treated as confidential if requested. The department also is active on Facebook, Filenko said.

• Daily Herald staff writer Bob Susnjara contributed to this report.

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