|The Wheelhouse Hotel in Wrigleyville. | Google|
A group of Wrigleyville’s sometimes-violent “candy kids” took a bold step Wednesday: They replenished their inventory by stealing boxes of sweets from a Clark Street hotel. And, two of them got arrested for it.
Dozens of crimes from robbery to aggravated battery to sexual abuse to general mayhem have been attributed to the groups of youths who drift around the area, offering boxes of candy for sale.
|Candy seen at right is offered to guests in the Wheelhouse lobby. | Wheelhouse Hotel|
Local convenience stores have reported that the kids steal boxes of candy from their shelves and then offer the goods for sale outside the Friendly Confines.
Those reports now seem to be confirmed.
Police said workers at the Wheelhouse Hotel, 3475 North Clark, flagged down cops around 8 p.m. Wednesday after a group of three kids stole boxes of candy from a shelf in the lobby.
Officers reviewed surveillance video of the heist and soon located the trio on the 3600 block of North Clark around 9p.m. The teens ran from the scene, but officers caught up with one who had stolen candy in his possession, according to a CPD spokesperson.
Another teen was arrested around 11 p.m. after a private security guard told police that another one of the suspects had returned to the hotel.
The two sixteen-year-old boys are charged with misdemeanor retail theft, police said. One of the teens lives more than 23 miles south of Wrigley Field in suburban Riverdale.
Wednesday’s thefts are the latest in a series of incidents involving the candy kids. A woman who works at a bar on the Wrigleyville bar strip reported in mid-July that one of the teens grabbed her inappropriately and groped her as she worked. Several bars along Clark Street have said that the youths throw rocks, ice, and cups of frozen water at patrons, sometimes causing injuries.