It’s been nearly eight months since Facebook launched its live video feature, which was first unveiled to celebrities looking to stream crowd-pleasing events. The tool is meant to rival Twitter‘s Periscope app and has thus far been used for innocuous means since being released to the general public. Thursday marked a particularly dark day for the service, however. A Chicago man was reportedly shot as he was livestreaming.
The incident occurred at Scott’s Convenience Store in the West Englewood neighborhood. The man kicks off the video by joking about the purported violence in the area, stating that the store reopened so he’d have a place to “duck and hide for cover.”
“They heard I was up here so they had to open the store back up for the kids, though. I can’t be out here with the store not open,” the man says mere seconds before the sound of a gunshot.
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The camera pans upward and a suspect is briefly seen in frame shooting a gun before fleeing. The sound of shouting from distressed witnesses can be heard during the remaining seconds.
Initially, viewers were skeptical of the validity of the footage, but the incident was confirmed by The Chicago Tribune, which ran a piece on Friday detailing the many shootings that have broken out in the city. Within the crime report is an item about a 31-year-old man who was shot in the 5500 block of South Hoyne Avenue—the block where Scott’s Convenience is located. The man is reportedly in critical condition.
According to data retrieved from the Chicago Police Department’s Clearmap Crime Incidents service, the area surrounding Scott’s Convenience has seen few violent crimes since the start of the new year. This marks a major shift from the uptick in homicides seen across Chicagoland as the area closes out its first quarter of the year. Sadly, this pattern doesn’t seem to be continuing. Approximately 40 minutes prior to the shooting streamed on Facebook Live, four others had been shot in the neighborhood less than three miles away.
A former Weekend Editor at the Daily Dot, April Siese's reporting covers everything from technology and politics to web culture and humor. Her work has been published by Bustle, Uproxx, Death and Taxes, Rolling Stone, the Daily Beast, Thrillist, Atlas Obscura, and others. Siese joined Quartz in December 2016.