An off-duty Chicago police officer was hit with a bottle and robbed in the Near North neighborhood this weekend. Not far away, a Loop resident was mugged as he entered his high-rise residential building. The incidents are the latest in a violent crime surge that shows no signs of slowing down in the two neighborhoods.
Around 2:30 a.m. on Saturday, a group of at least three men approached a 24-year-old off-duty officer in the 600 block of North Wells. A bottle was thrown at the man’s face and he was robbed of his phone and personal items, according to the police department. The department did not identify the man as an off-duty officer, but his position was confirmed by a police source. Descriptions of the offenders were not offered by the department.
The officer was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital for treatment of a cut to his head. The department said he was expected to be treated and released.
Around 12:30 a.m. on Saturday, a man was mugged as he entered the back door of his condo building at 8 East Randolph, police said. The offender took the victim’s wallet and fled northbound on State Street.
The victim described the offender as a bald black male who was wearing a black jacket with white sleeves, dark pants, and brown shoes.
Up, Up, And Away
Robberies in the Near North neighborhood are up 50% so far this year compared to the same time period in 2017. There were 45 hold-ups reported in the area through February 23 this year compared to 30 during the same timeframe last year and just 15 in 2014.
CWBChicago has been closely watching the Loop’s robbery rate since last winter.
So far this year, Loop muggings are up 106% compared to last year. Sixty-four robberies were reported through February 23, up from 31 during the same time period last year. Compared to 2014’s 13 muggings, incidents are up 392% in the Loop.
Editors Note: The original version of this story erroneously reported that robberies in the Loop are up 80% compared to 2014. That was wrong. Robberies are up 392% in the Loop compared to 2014. We regret and have corrected the error.