Drive-by paintball attacks surge as videos go viral

For over a month, Chicago police have been handling hundreds of reports of drive-by paintball attacks on pedestrians across the city. Video of some incidents are circulating on social media.

On Monday alone, paintball attacks were reported from Uptown to Lincoln Park and in the Loop. The University of Chicago Police Department this week warned the school’s community about the assaults after eight separate attacks were reported to their department.

At the school’s hospital, an ophthalmologist told WGN yesterday that the university’s hospital had handled at least seven eye injuries from paintball guns in the past 48 hours. Many of those cases required urgent surgery, she said.

On the North Side, a Lakeview man told CWBChicago that he was shot multiple times in a drive-by paintball attack as he jogged along the lakefront near North Avenue Beach on Monday evening. The man said he was running when a man began firing paintballs at him from the back seat of a car that was heading northbound on the ramp to LSD around 8 p.m.

He had red welts on the back of the head, chest, shoulder, bicep, and back side, he said.

Moments earlier, another person reported being shot by paintballs near Oak Street Beach. About 30 minutes later, a woman was shot repeatedly by a paintballer in the Loop.

Shortly after midnight Monday, paintball attacks were reported near Clarendon and Buena and on the 4700 block of North Clark in Uptown. No serious injuries were reported in the incidents.

But a 29-year-old man was not so lucky in the Loop last month. He was struck in the right eye by paintballs that were fired at him from a car on the 700 block of South Michigan around 12:30 a.m. September 10. The shooters also struck another man who was with him, but that victim was hit in the chest and did not have any injuries, police said at the time.

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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is news@cwbchicago.com