While much of the city is shuttered, robbers are targeting convenience stores

While nearly all businesses are closed overnight during the COVID-19 crisis, most of Chicago’s convenience stores are still operating 24/7. And the city’s criminal element has noticed.

Detectives are warning Loop convenience stores about a series of early morning robberies of 7-Eleven franchises. Separately, one of the chain’s Lincoln Park stores has been robbed three times in less than two weeks.

Loop warning

Area Central detectives warned downtown retailers Sunday after a Loop convenience store was targeted by robbers earlier in the day. It is at least the third hold-up that police have connected to a pattern in the usually active neighborhood.

In the latest case, two men entered the 7-Eleven at 35 East Wacker and tried to rob the store at knifepoint around 3:50 a.m., police said. A store clerk managed to pepper-spray one of the offenders and both men fled the scene empty-handed. 

Detectives described the robbers as two black men between 45- and 50-years-old. One is 5’3” to 5’5” tall and 140-150 pounds. He wore a green ski cap, gray sweatshirt, black sweatpants, and a maroon hoodie. The other is 5’9” to 5’11” and 160-170 pounds. He wore a blue jacket with blue jeans.

On Wednesday, a man pulled out a knife and robbed the 7-Eleven at 343 South Dearborn at 5:17 a.m., police said. They described the offender as a black man who’s between 30- and 35-years-old, 5’9” to 5’11” tall, and 190-200 pounds. He wore a black and blue jacket with a Chicago Bears ski cap, and dark blue jeans.

And at 1:45 a.m. on Mar. 9, a man and a woman threw hot coffee in a clerk’s face and tried to grab his cash drawer at 180 North Franklin location. An ambulance crew treated the victim for scald injuries.

Police described the offenders as a black male between 35- and 40-years-old who stands 5’11” to 6-feet tall and weighs 170-180 pounds. He wore a black and blue jacket with a dirty gray t-shirt. The man was accompanied by a white woman who’s between 35- and 40-years-old. She’s 5’11” to 6-feet tall, has blonde hair, and wore dark clothing, police said.

Anyone with information about the robbery pattern can contact Area Central detectives at 312-747-8380 regarding case P20-1-108

Lincoln Park store targeted again

A gunman robbed the 7-Eleven store at 2619 North Clark around 1:45 a.m. Sunday. It’s the third time that location has been robbed since Mar. 13, according to police records.

The offender pulled out a gun, threatened to shoot the clerk, took the store’s cash and fled southbound on Clark Street, according to police. The gunman is a black male who wore a black mask, blue latex gloves, gray hoodie, black Adidas track pants with a stripe, brown shoes, and a white baseball cap. 

The robbery details are similar to a series of three convenience store hold-ups that unfolded in under 90 minutes on Tuesday evening. But police have not publicly connected Sunday’s heist with the earlier crimes.

According to police data, the Clark Street convenience store was also robbed at 3:30 a.m. on Mar. 14 and at 5 a.m. on Mar. 13.

No arrests have been made.

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About CWBChicago 6781 Articles
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