Judge to 18-year-olds charged with robbing Mag Mile Walgreens: “You’ve graduated to the big time.”

Chicago police said they recovered this steak knife from one of the men. | CPD

Two 18-year-old men who allegedly robbed a Walgreens on the Mag Mile received a sobering message from their bond court judge: “You’ve graduated to the big time.” And one of the accused men has been connected with a flash mob shoplifting incident on Michigan Avenue last autumn, according to police.

Dalvin Baldwin and Howard Parker have had previous run-ins with the law. But the duo turned 18 late last year, moving them out of the juvenile system and into “real life” adult court. Now, they’re both charged with felony aggravated robbery.

Dalvin Baldwin (left) and Howard Parker | CPD

Police arrested Parker and Baldwin at the State-Lake “L” station a few minutes after they allegedly robbed the Walgreens at 410 North Michigan on Mar. 14.  An unidentified woman who also took part in the incident got away.

Store employees allegedly saw the men place snacks in a bag and then try to walk out the front door. Parker smacked a phone from one employee’s hands as she took photos of them taking the merchandise, police said.

The duo reportedly continued walking toward the door when another employee confronted them.

That’s when Baldwin allegedly pulled out a knife wrapped in tissue paper and threatened to stab the second employee. The two fled, then Baldwin returned briefly to throw rocks at the store, before leaving a second time, according to court records.

Cops said they found a black steak knife in Baldwin’s jacket when they detained him at the CTA station. Both employees identified Baldwin and Parker as the robbers, according to police.

Police said Baldwin was also identified as a member of a shoplifting mob that stole $3,600 worth of fragrances from Ulta Beauty, 430 North Michigan, on Oct. 15. He was a juvenile at the time.

Chicago Tribune reporter Will Lee, who was present for the duo’s bail hearing, tweeted that Judge John Lyke told the men, “You’ve graduated to the big time,” as he set their bail conditions.

Baldwin was ordered held in lieu of $100,000 bail and Lyke ordered him to go onto electronic monitoring and attend school if he can post a 10% deposit bond.

Lyke gave Parker a $75,000 bail with similar release requirements. But, he also held Parker without bail for violating the terms of probation from a previous case.

Update July 15, 2021: Parker pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful restraint in exchange for a one year sentence, according to court records. Prosecutors dropped an aggravated robbery charge. He received the state’s standard 50% sentence reduction for good behavior and 269 days credit for time in custody before pleading. In the end, he did not spend any time in prison for the case.

Baldwin pleaded guilty to the same charge and received a sentence of 24 months probation and 100 months of community service. Prosecutors also dropped his robbery charge.

Judge Thomas Byrne handled both cases.

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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 news@cwbchicago.com