Lakeview: Surveillance video leads to burglar’s arrest when he returns one week later

Richard Johnson (inset) was arrested in the 900 block of West Cornelia | CPD; Multiplottr

Home surveillance footage and a sharp-eyed resident have helped police capture a burglary offender near Boystown, according to court records.

Officers responded to the 900 block of West Cornelia around 5 p.m on Jan. 2nd after a resident reported seeing a man outside his home who looked identical to a burglar who broke into his apartment on Christmas Day.

Cops had no trouble catching the accused burglar, 51-year-old Richard Johnson. He was taking a break, urinating in a nearby alley when they arrived, police said.

Once Johnson was detained, cops reviewed surveillance images of the Christmas Day burglary and confirmed that Johnson was wearing many of the same clothing items and had similar facial features as the burglar. Johnson was arrested.

Police said they found him in possession of two Ventra cards that belong to other men. Officers say Johnson also falsely identified himself as his brother, Charles. That claim was debunked when cops determined that Johnson didn’t have a bunny rabbit tattoo on his chest like his brother does, according to state records.

Prosecutors have charged Johnson with two counts of felony burglary, theft of lost or mislaid property, and obstructing identification. Judge Stephanie Miller said Johnson could be released on a recognizance bond if he qualifies for electronic monitoring. Johnson remains in custody as of this evening.

Detectives are working to determine if Johnson is responsible for any other burglaries in the Lakeview East area. The neighborhood has seen a surge in home break-ins since mid-October.
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CWBChicago was created in 2013 by five residents of Wrigleyville and Boystown who had grown disheartened with inaccurate information that was being provided at local Community Policing (CAPS) meetings. Our coverage area has expanded since then to cover Lincoln Park, River North, The Loop, Uptown, and other North Side Areas. But our mission remains unchanged: To provide original public safety reporting with better context and greater detail than mainstream media outlets. Our editorial email address is