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Ronald McDonald House near children's hospital damaged during recent Chicago looting

USA TODAY logo USA TODAY 8/13/2020 Ryan W. Miller and Grace Hauck, USA TODAY
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A Ronald McDonald House Charity location was among the buildings damaged during looting earlier this week in Chicago, the charity says.

The Ronald McDonald House near Lurie Children's Hospital, which offers housing for families and children who are at the hospital, had the glass of its front door smashed overnight Monday.

"Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC) is disheartened by the events that occurred Sunday evening at the Ronald McDonald House near Lurie Children's Hospital — causing minimal damage to the exterior entrance of the House and an unsettling experience for the families currently staying there while their child receives medical treatment," Sheila Musolino, president and CEO of the organization, said in a statement to USA TODAY.

Workers clean up inside of the Saint Laurent store after it was looted on August 10, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. Police made more than 100 arrests during the night as widespread looting and disorderly conduct was reported downtown and other areas of the city. Officials believe the violence had apparently grown out of a shoot out between police and a suspect. © Scott Olson, Getty Images Workers clean up inside of the Saint Laurent store after it was looted on August 10, 2020 in Chicago, Illinois. Police made more than 100 arrests during the night as widespread looting and disorderly conduct was reported downtown and other areas of the city. Officials believe the violence had apparently grown out of a shoot out between police and a suspect.

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WBBM-TV reported that residents in the house were briefly placed on lock down as the chaos continued outside.

"We're here for families at all times — whether there’s a pandemic or civil unrest, we need to make sure that we are here allowing families to get the rest they need while they have a child in the hospital seeking care, and so it’s so important that anything that might be going on outside, we maintain our care for families," Lisa Mitchell, a vice president for the Chicago chapter, told WBBM-TV.

WLS-TV reported that 30 families were staying at the house at the time. No injuries or damage inside the building occurred, the TV station reported.

A Chicago police report said that a hammer was used to break glass on the front door of the building. No suspect was identified or in custody, police said.

100 arrested, 13 officers injured: More on Chicago violence after crowds clash with police

More on Chicago: Man charged with attempted murder in shooting that police say sparked looting

Widespread looting rocked Chicago's Magnificent Mile shopping district and other parts of downtown early Monday as police say hundreds of windows were smashed, stores were robbed and people were injured.

Police said Monday 100 people were arrested after posts on social media encouraged a "caravan" of cars to engage in looting.

Chicago Police Department Superintendent David Brown said the social media posts appear to have been prompted by an incident Sunday in which police officers wounded a 20-year-old man who shot at them. A Facebook video later circulated falsely claiming police had shot and killed a 15-year-old boy.

Chicago police arrested and charged Latrell Allen of Englewood with attempted murder after they say he shot at officers. Officers returned fire and hit Allen, who was in stable condition, police said.

Activists with Black Lives Matter Chicago cast doubt on the police narrative of the incident in a statement Monday, saying Allen "ran away, rightfully fearing for his safety in this dangerous interaction with racist armed police."

Chicago police "claims the victim shot first and that they found a gun on the scene. These details are uncorroborated, partially because CPD also claims there is no body camera footage available for this interaction," the group said.

Brown said misinformation fueled what turned into looting Monday morning.

Along the Magnificent Mile, people were seen going in and out of stores carrying shopping bags full of merchandise and also running out of a bank that had its windows smashed, the Chicago Tribune reported. And as the crowd grew, vehicles dropped off more people in the area.

At one point, shots were fired at police and officers returned fire. No officers were wounded by gunfire, but Brown said a security guard and a civilian were hospitalized in critical condition after being shot.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot called the incident "abject criminal behavior." 

"This is not legitimate First Amendment protected speech. These were not poor people engaged in petty theft to feed themselves and their family," she said. "This was straight-up felony criminal conduct."

The Chicago's police union, meanwhile, is calling for federal prosecution of those who looted. In a letter Wednesday, the union called on the U.S. attorney for the Northern District of Illinois to investigate and prosecute the people involved in the "massive civil unrest" Monday.  

An increased police presence and restricted access to downtown overnight was expected to continue throughout the weekend, city officials said. Police officers would be working 12-hour shifts, and days off would be canceled, Brown said.

Parts of Lake Shore Drive, expressway ramps and CTA stops downtown would be closed, and all downtown bridges would be up, the Office of Emergency Management and Communications said Wednesday.

Meanwhile, more than 2,200 people had expressed interest in a Saturday protest against police brutality on the South Side. Organizers said the group planned to shut down a major freeway.

Contributing: N'dea Yancey-Bragg. Follow USA TODAY's Ryan Miller and Grace Hauck on Twitter @RyanW_Miller and @grace_hauck.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Ronald McDonald House near children's hospital damaged during recent Chicago looting

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