Update May 27, 2020 — CWBChicago has secured police bodycam video of the incident.
The West Side man who was released by police when an angry mob surrounded and threatened to shoot them earlier this month is back in custody—and so is the main instigator in the confrontation, according to Chicago police.
Around 2 p.m. on March 17th, officers stopped 31-year-old Robert Gates in the 4700 block of West Gladys for a traffic violation, according to police. Gates “began to discard bundles of suspected narcotics to the ground,” the department said in a statement two days later. “A crowd gathered around the police, some retrieving the discarded suspect narcotics, others approaching the officers, yelling at and threatening the police. Gunshots then were heard in close proximity to the incident, putting officers in further fear of their safety. [Gates] was able to make good his escape with the help of subjects from the crowd.”
Cops caught up with Gates on Tuesday in the 2400 block of West Flournoy and took him into custody. He is charged with two felony counts of aggravated battery of a police officer and felony escape from a peace officer, police said.
Arrested separately on Tuesday was 30-year-old Anthony James, the man that police say threatened to shoot an officer if Gates was not released during the incident on Gladys.
James is charged with two felony counts of aggravated assault of a police officer; felony aiding escape from a peace officer, and two misdemeanor counts of resisting-obstructing police.
Both men are convicted felons, and both are due in bond court this afternoon.
A police department source said Gates was handcuffed when he ran away from officers on the 17th, but the handcuffs had been removed by the time police caught up with him on Tuesday.
“He said a friend was supposed to drop [the cuffs] off at the station,” the source said.
Moments after Gates allegedly escaped with the help of the angry crowd, an officer was heard describing what happened on police radio: “Ten people surrounded me, indicating that they had firearms. And one person pulled him away from me, holding his waist, indicating that he would use a firearm against me.”
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