Independence Day USA: Nationwide shootings leave at least nine dead and many more injured

The attacks took place in Chicago, Houston and Indianapolis

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The Independent US

Independence Day celebrations were tainted by a string of shootings across the United States over the weekend.

In Chicago, a series of bloody attacks reportedly left nine people dead and at least 60 injured.

And a further 11 people were injured in separate shootings in both Houston, Texas, and the Midwestern city of Indianapolis.

According to ABC news station WLS-TV, police in Chicago fired their weapons in five different incidents across the city.

The first fatality occurred at the very start of Fourth of July celebrations at around 2.30am on Friday, with the most recent shootings taking place on Sunday.

On Monday the Chicago Tribune updated its tally of shooting victims in a city that has one of the highest homicide rates in the US. According to the newspaper there have been 1,129 victims this year alone.

Meanwhile, a man opened fire at the Houston Caribbean Festival in the early hours of Saturday, wounding at least four people, police said.

Two women were also injured as the several thousand- strong crowd rushed to flee the shooting at the arena. Police spokesman Jodi Silva said the shooting victims were taken to two different hospitals, and one man was in a critical condition and not expected to survive.

There have been no arrests and the Houston Police Department is calling for people with information to come forward.

In Indianapolis seven people were injured in a shooting that police said may have been set off by two people bumping into each other in the street.

The gunfire erupted about half an hour before the bars were to close at 3am on Saturday, in a neighbourhood popular with university students and other young people. 

Police arrested a 23-year-old man on a preliminary charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm and questioned him about the shooting. He was not charged in connection with the shooting, police spokesman Lieutenant Chris Bailey said. 

Investigators were still trying to sort out what happened more than 12 hours later, and were hoping witnesses would come forward once the initial fear had worn down. 

Police said one man was in critical condition at a local hospital. Five other men and a woman also were shot, but did not have life-threatening injuries, authorities said. All of the victims are in their 20s. 

Additional reporting by agencies