Chicago police are investigating at least three robberies involving CTA train passengers in the Loop and Lincoln Park since Sunday evening. No arrests have been made.
Most recently, a man punched another man in the face and stole his phone aboard a CTA train on the North Side. Police found the victim on the Fullerton Brown Line platform, 945 West Fullerton, around 12:55 a.m. Monday. He declined medical attention.
Officers responded to another robbery on the 200 block of West Adams at 10:40 p.m. The victim, 58, told police that he had a confrontation with another man at the Diversey Brown Line station a few minutes earlier. The offender followed the victim when he exited at an L stop in the Loop, then beat him up and robbed him.
Police said the robber struck the man in the head, kicked him, and took his backpack. The victim is in stable condition at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
An officer on the scene said the offender is a black man in his 20’s with short hair who wore earbuds, a black jacket, ripped blue jeans, and orange gym shoes. He was last seen heading northbound on Wells Street.
Earlier on Sunday, a group of four teens jumped and robbed a man of two bags of groceries on the Roosevelt Red Line platform, according to police dispatch records. The 1st (Central) Police District had no police officers available to handle the man’s complaint, so he was told to call 311 for a report.
Violent crime has been on the rise across the CTA system. CWBChicago exposed the problem in a June 2018 report. Reports of robberies and aggravated batteries were up sharply on train lines, we found. Yet overall crime within the CTA was “down” on paper because the city had largely stopped prosecuting fare jumpers and narcotics cases.
The CWBChicago report is bolstered by a new Chicago Tribune analysis:
Reports of serious crimes on the CTA rail system have doubled since 2015, even as ridership declined, and such crimes rose only slightly citywide…
At the same time, the arrest rate for these “L”-related crimes has dropped, suggesting that even as CTA’s rail system has become more dangerous, there is less chance the perpetrators will be held accountable.
In other recent incidents, two men robbed a victim at gunpoint outside the North-Clybourn Red Line station just before 8 p.m. on Friday. They got away with $400 of the man’s money.
Last Tuesday, police found a 29-year-old man lying on the Roosevelt Red Line platform with blood coming from his head. He had been beaten and robbed while waiting for a northbound train.
Around 1 a.m. last Monday, a woman told police that a man grabbed her arm and took her wallet as they rode a southbound Red Line train near Belmont.
No one is in custody for any of the robberies.