Published: September 11, 2023, 12:12h.
Last updated: September 11, 2023, 12:12h.
A Chicago pedestrian was injured early Monday in a shooting incident near the newly opened Bally’s casino. The incident occurred just one block away from the casino, which started operations less than 48 hours ago.
The shooter arrived in a Dodge pickup truck at approximately 2:47 a.m. at the North State Street location, as reported by Chicago TV station WLS. After the incident, the truck quickly fled the scene.
The victim, a 21-year-old male, sustained a gunshot wound to his left leg while on the sidewalk in Chicago’s River North neighborhood. He was transported to Northwestern Memorial Hospital and is currently listed in good condition.
It remains unclear whether the victim or the shooter had been inside the newly opened Bally’s Chicago Casino at Medinah Temple. Furthermore, the relationship between the two individuals before the shooting is unknown.
The North Wabash Avenue casino began its operations on Saturday and was open when the shooting occurred, according to the Chicago Sun Times.
As of Monday, no suspect has been apprehended in connection with the incident.
In recent years, Chicago has received national attention for its high rates of shootings and homicides.
However, as of July, the city recorded 59 murders, reflecting a 12% decrease compared to July 2022.
From January to July 2023, there have been 363 murders in Chicago, compared to 387 in the same period in 2022.
In total, Chicago police reported 695 murders in 2022, according to Chicago TV station WFLD.
The temporary casino opened its doors at 8 a.m. on Saturday, becoming the first legal casino in the city.
There was a long line of people waiting to enter, as reported by Chicago TV station WBBM. Extra patrols were deployed by the police during the casino’s opening weekend.
The gaming property now operates daily from 8 a.m. to 4 a.m. It features a 34,000-square-foot gaming floor with nearly 800 slot machines and 56 table games. Additionally, there are several bars and restaurants within the venue.
The annual revenue generated by the casino is estimated to be $55 million for the city of Chicago.
In the future, a permanent casino named “Freedom Center” is expected to open at the Chicago Tribune’s publishing plant on West Chicago Avenue, possibly in 2026, according to local news outlet Block Club Chicago.
The expansive riverfront property will house a $1.7 billion complex, complete with 3,400 slot machines, 173 table games, a hotel, a theater, and around a dozen restaurants.
The permanent Bally’s casino is projected to generate $200 million in annual revenue for the city, as reported by the Sun Times.
The city’s portion of the gaming property’s revenue will be allocated to police officer and firefighter pension costs, as mandated by SB 516.
Under SB 516, Chicago and Illinois will receive a percentage of the slot machine and table game wins, based on the casino’s gross gaming revenue (GGR).