Three women fell victim to robbers Monday evening in Streeterville as police finally issued a warning about an on-going crime pattern near the neighborhood’s Lake Shore Park.
At least eight victims have now been targeted in six separate muggings since Dec. 24. And all of the robberies have taken place on or near Dewitt Place.
Police said three men attacked three women as the victims walked eastbound on the 200 block of East Chestnut around 8:35 p.m. last night. The offenders tried to take the victims’ property by force and punched one of the victims in her face, police said.
A 21-year-old woman who was battered lost property to the offenders, police said. The other two victims, ages 21 and 22, managed to maintain control of their belongings.
The victims said the offenders fled the area in a white sedan.
That vehicle description is different from a white SUV that has been used as the get-away car in previous incidents. But, like the earlier cases, Monday’s offenders sped toward Lake Shore Drive and disappeared.
About two hours after the robbery, Area Central detectives issued a community alert to warn about the on-going robbery problem that has plagued the area just two blocks from Water Tower Place and the Magnificent Mile.
The alert also revealed that police believe a Dec. 24 robbery on the 900 block of North Dewitt is connected to a series of muggings that began last Monday evening, Dec. 30.
Police said the offenders in the robberies are two to three black males in their early- to mid-20’s who stand 5’6” to 5’10” tall and weigh 145 to 185 pounds. That information matches the descriptions of the attackers who targeted the three women last night.
The pattern now includes five robberies and attempted robberies in addition to last night’s incident:
- in the 900 block of North Dewitt at 11:04 p.m. on Dec. 24
- in the 200 block of East Pearson at 10:30 p.m. on Dec. 30
- in the 800 block of North Dewitt around 10:30 p.m. on Dec. 30
- in the 800 block of North Dewitt at 10:30 a.m. on Jan. 2
- in the 900 block of North Dewitt at about 6 p.m. on Jan. 3
On Sunday, police said a white Jeep Grand Cherokee sped away from them as they neared the vehicle at Dewitt and Delaware around 9:40 p.m. The Jeep, which has tinted windows, fled onto southbound Lake Shore Drive at Chicago Avenue.
The same Jeep returned to the area about 30 minutes later and again took off from police as officers approached it near Delaware and Mies Van Der Rohe, near where the robbery spree has been unfolding. Once again, the Jeep sped onto southbound Lake Shore Drive.
Cops saw the Jeep one more time around 1:40 a.m. Monday as it sped onto the Ontario feeder ramp.
Police believe the Jeep was recently reported stolen in southwest suburban Homer Glen.
Local Alderman Brian Hopkins (2nd) told constituents that the 18th District (Near North) Police District is committing additional resources to the area around Lake Shore Park. The Northwestern University Police Department is assisting with CPD’s efforts, Hopkins said.
Police could not confirm witness reports that the three women targeted on Monday evening are students at Northwestern University.