Thirteen shot in US

Last updated 22:11 20/09/2013
Peter Nickeas / Twitter

Chicago police at the scene of the shooting.

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Thirteen people, including a 3-year-old boy, were injured late on Thursday when someone opened fire on people in a park located in the US city of Chicago. 

Chicago Fire Department officials said the child was in critical condition. Two other victims were also in critical condition, officials said.

Chicago police reported that the attack took place on a basketball court park in the city's Back of the Yards neighbourhood.

A police spokesman told AFP that no one had been killed.

"Basically, there have been no fatalities reported and there is  no one in custody at this time," a police dispatcher said.

A witness told the Chicago Tribune that he saw three police officers carry the injured toddler to an ambulance.

"I didn't hear no sounds" from the child, he said.

Another witness, Francis John, 70, told the Chicago Sun-Times she heard the gunfire from her nearby home. "It was a lot of boom, boom, boom," she said.

The Sun-Times quoted a witness as saying that dreadlocked gunmen driving a grey sedan fired at him and then shot up the park.

A witness, Julian Harris, told the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper that men fired at him from a gray sedan before turning toward Cornell Square Park and firing at people in the area. He said his 3-year-old nephew Deonte "Tay-man" Howard,was wounded in the cheek.

"They hit the light pole next to me, but I ducked down and ran into the house," he said. "They've been coming round here looking for people to shoot every night, just gang-banging stuff. It's what they do."

The Tribune said that four of the victims were in fair-to-serious condition and that several others good-to-fair condition.

Tribune reporter Peter Nickeas tweeted this photo from the park:

Officer Amina Greer said the shooting occurred shortly after 10 pm Thursday (local time, 3pm Friday NZT). According to Greer, at least 10 ambulances responded to the scene, transporting victims to several area hospitals.

It is not known what caused the shooting and police have not yet released details about who was responsible.

The incident comes just days after 13 people died in a mass shooting in a Washington DC naval yard.

Chicago is struggling to stem an epidemic of gang violence that has helped push the city's murder rate up 16 per cent to 506 people last year.

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President Barack Obama returned to his adopted hometown earlier this year to appeal for an end to the "senseless" gun violence  ravaging Chicago.

Nickeas posted these photos and videos from the scene on his Instagram account:

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