4 guns seized, 3 adults charged during Loop violence crackdown

Police said these four guns were seized during a crackdown on violent crime in the Loop last Friday night. | CPD

Chicago police this weekend will ramp up efforts to tamp down recent violence in the downtown area that has stemmed from wild parties on streets near the Riverwalk and in hotel rooms, according to CPD sources.

A similar effort last Friday night resulted in four gun seizures and three adult arrests for alleged firearms violations in the Loop.

The stepped-up efforts by cops in the 1st (Central) District followed two weeks of violence that left one man fatally shot, five others injured by gunfire, and one man stabbed in the downtown area.

Left to right: Andre Baker, Kenneth Norels, and Dominique Williams | CPD

Around 11:50 p.m. last Friday, police approached 42-year-old Andre Baker when they allegedly saw him drinking alcohol on Wacker Drive near the Wabash bridge. Baker adjusted his waistband, held his waist, and tried to run from cops who saw a gun-like bulge in the front of his pants, prosecutors said.

A loaded firearm fell from Baker while police struggled to arrest him moments later, according to allegations made in court. Investigators determined that the gun had been stolen from downstate Centralia earlier last week, prosecutors said.

Baker, who has eight felony convictions, is on parole for manufacture-delivery of cocaine. He is now charged with Class X armed habitual criminal, two counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm, and two counts of resisting police. 

Judge Sandra Ortiz ordered him held in lieu of $100,000 on the new charges and said he would need to go onto electronic monitoring if he is freed before trial. Ortiz also ordered him held without bail on an Illinois Department of Corrections warrant while the state considers revocation of his parole.

Then, around 2:30 a.m. Saturday, police stopped to speak with 24-year-old Kenneth Norels when they saw him drinking alcohol on the street near State and Lake, according to prosecutors. 

During their conversation, Norels told police that he was carrying a gun, and cops recovered a loaded firearm with a laser sight attachment from him, a prosecutor said in bond court last weekend. 

Norels has an Illinois Firearm Owner’s ID (FOID) card, but he is allegedly not licensed to carry a concealed firearm. Prosecutors charged him with unlawful use of a weapon.

Judge Susan Ortiz released Norels on a recognizance bond after citing his cooperation with police and his status as a FOID holder.

Shortly after 4 a.m. Saturday, police arrested 34-year-old Dominique Williams after 911 callers reported a person with a gun outside the Congress Hotel, 520 South Michigan. 

Prosecutors said after Williams’ car pulled onto the hotel driveway, she began arguing with a male passenger, reached into her purse, and pulled out a gun that she pointed at the man. Officers allegedly recovered a loaded handgun from her bag during their investigation.

Williams is charged with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and disorderly conduct. Judge Charles Beach set bail at $15,000. She was released from jail after posting a $1,500 deposit bond.

In addition to the real firearms that police recovered during Friday night’s enforcement mission, cops also arrested two people for possessing look-alike guns in the Loop, according to police records.

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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