Trump: Slaying of Bulls star’s cousin a reason blacks will vote for him

Trump: Slaying of Bulls star's cousin a reason blacks will vote for him

By  Chicago Tribune

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump took to Twitter on Saturday politicizing the shooting death of Bulls star Dwyane Wade’s cousin on the South Side — suggesting that such crimes are the reason African-Americans will vote for him in November.

He tweeted: “Dwyane Wade’s cousin was just shot and killed walking her baby in Chicago. Just what I have been saying. African-Americans will VOTE TRUMP!” He initially tweeted the message, misspelling the athlete’s name; he later pulled that tweet down and put up the same one with the correct spelling.

On Friday, Nykea Aldridge, 32, and a man were walking in the 6300 block of South Calumet Avenue about 3:30 p.m. when two men approached and someone began firing at the man, authorities and a family spokesman said.

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Aldridge, Wade’s cousin, was hit in the head and the arm and taken to Stroger Hospital, where she died, police said. The baby was not hurt, and a relative came to the scene and took the child, police said. Aldridge leaves behind four children.

More: Dwyane Wade’s cousin shot dead while pushing her baby in stroller in Chicago

Trump has shined a spotlight on Chicago’s violence — criticizing everyone from Police Department leadership not being tough on crime to President Barack Obama, who got his start as a community organizer on the South Side — on the campaign trail, including during the Republican National Convention.

“In the president’s hometown of Chicago, more than 2,000 people have been the victims of shootings this year alone. And almost 4,000 have been killed in the Chicago area since he took office,” Trump said during the speech. “Decades of progress made in bringing down crime are now being reversed by this administration’s rollback of criminal enforcement.”

A Tribune review of shooting incidents in the city showed more than 2,200 people had been shot this year as of July 20 — the time of the convention. The number of deaths since Obama took office on Jan. 20, 2009, was not available.

Homicides in Chicago are up 49 percent, according to Chicago Police Department figures, with 441 total as of Monday. In comparison, Chicago recorded 473 homicides for all of 2015. So far this year, at least 2,702 people have been shot in Chicago, according to data kept by the Tribune. All of last year, there were 2,988 shooting victims.

More: 92 deaths, 2,623 bullets: Tracking every Chicago police shooting over 6 years

In an interview Monday night on the Fox News show “The O’Reilly Factor,” Trump reiterated comments about Chicago violence being “out of control” and added that the Chicago police force does not have “the right people in charge.”

Show host Bill O’Reilly asked Trump how to solve the city’s crime problem, with homicides up nearly 50 percent.

“How? By being very much tougher than they are right now. They’re right now not tough. I could tell you this very long and quite boring story. But when I was in Chicago, I got to meet a couple of very top police. I said, ‘How do you stop this? How do you stop this? If you were put in charge — to a specific person — do you think you could stop it?’ He said, ‘Mr. Trump, I’d be able to stop it in one week.’ And I believed him 100 percent,” Trump said.

A Chicago police spokesman said Trump has not met with top brass.

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