|Cops located Salvador Reitinger (inset) by following phone pings and looking for a Bernie Sanders bumper sticker.|
Here’s one guy who’s definitely “feeling the Bern.”
A violent armed carjacker who tied a woman up and took her car at gunpoint on Saturday was busted after police tracked him down thanks to pings from the victim’s stolen phone and her distinctive “Bernie Sanders” bumper sticker, police said.
Did we mention that the accused offender completed an eight-year prison and parole sentence for carjacking just two weeks ago? We’ll get to that.
Around 8 p.m. on Saturday, a 49-year-old woman was in her garage in the 4100 block of North Central Park—about a mile east of where Irving Park Road meets the Kennedy. As she went about her business, Salvador Reitinger walked in, pointed a handgun at her face, and collected her money, debit card, and keys, police said. Reitinger tied the woman’s hands and feet with electrical cords and a phone charger, then drove away in her 2013 Ford Focus with that pesky “Bernie” sticker on the back, according to cops.
Unbeknownst to Reitinger, the victim’s cellphone was in the car, sending off routine tracking information as he allegedly drove to a nearby McDonald’s and continued on to Logan Square.
Cops following the tracking info kept their eyes peeled for that increasingly-rare 2016 campaign sticker. They soon found what they were looking for in the 2700 block of North Sawyer: a parked 2013 Ford Focus with a Bernie Sanders sticker—and Reitinger in the driver’s seat eating his McDonald’s.
Reitinger took off on foot as cops approached, according to a police report. Prosecutors said that at one point he reached into his waistband, pulled out a handgun that was loaded with 15 rounds, and threw it. Pursuing officers picked it up.
Cops caught Reitinger in the 2700 block of North Kedzie and took him into custody.
Prosecutors charged the 26-year-old Four Corner Hustler street gang member with Class X aggravated vehicular hijacking with a weapon; Class X armed robbery with a firearm; being a felon in possession of a weapon; and felony unlawful restraint.
According to court records, Reitinger was sentenced to eight-years behind bars for carjacking a victim in the West Loop on January 11, 2010. He completed parole in the 2010 case two weeks ago.