Analysis of Weekend Gun Violence Coverage

    This past weekend, from February 26 to March 1, was the most deadly Weekendweekend this month in Chicago. Fox Chicago reported that 27 people were shot between 5pm on Friday and 5am on Monday. Five of these 27 people died. Similarly to last weekend, Fox Chicago, the Chicago Sun-Times, and CBS Local published tallies of incidents of gun violence that were updated over the course of the weekend. These three outlets all define the weekend as beginning at 5pm on Friday and ending at 5am on Monday. The only difference in these tallies was the final count. CBS Local reported 25 shootings and 5 people killed while the Sun-Times reported 27 people shot and 5 people killed. It should be noted that all articles published online by Fox Chicago covering gun violence in Chicago are from the Sun-Times Media Wire. Therefore, Fox’s coverage is nearly identical to that of the Sun-Times. This is interesting because it means that Fox is not directing any resources or reporters to the Chicago gun violence beat. It is also interesting to note that Fox Chicago published several articles this weekend about individual incidents of gun violence from the Sun-Times Media Wire that the Sun-Times publication did not publish online. 

Starting March 1st our Chicago Justice Show will be streaming 3 times a week on Monday – Wednesday – Friday starting @ 5:30pm (CT). On Monday’s we will be focusing on media coverage of crime, violence, and justice issues both in Chicago and nationally. You can stream the show on our Facebook Page, Twitter Page, YouTube Page, and our Twitch Channel.

    As you can see in the chart below, Fox Chicago had the most detailed coverage amongst all the media outlets analyzed with 17 articles published over the course of the weekend detailing gun violence across Chicago. Other TV stations had far fewer articles. ABC Local published only one, CBS Local published seven, NBC Local published three, and WGN TV published six. Among print media, the Sun-Times had far more detailed coverage than the Tribune. While the Sun-Times published 12 stories about gun violence this weekend, the Tribune only published two. Both of these stories were published at the same time, on Saturday at 10am. 

    It is interesting to note that there was one incident this weekend that was covered by all seven media outlets. On Friday evening, a man and a woman were shot on the Eisenhower Expressway around 8pm. As a result of the shooting, the inbound Expressway was shut down. Six out of seven media outlets published stories later Friday night, and the Tribune published an article on Saturday morning detailing the incident.

 

Tracy has nearly two decades of experience researching and working within criminal justice systems. When Tracy began pursuing a career dedicate to system reform, he found that no single organization existed to promote evidence-based discussions among law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve. Recognizing that citizens in Chicago deserved the right to demand transparency in their criminal justice system, Siska established the Chicago Justice Project. He received his Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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