Update November 9, 2021 — Ashley Brown pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of retail theft in exchange for a three-year sentence. Judge Thaddeus Wilson handled the case.
Three cops were injured as they tried to arrest a man who robbed a West Loop Target store and stole thousands of dollars worth of electronics and liquor from six other locations over the past month, according to prosecutors.
Ashley Brown, age 32, is charged with felony robbery, aggravated battery causing great bodily harm, retail theft, three counts of resisting police, and possession of a controlled substance. Cops arrested Brown on Thursday after they recognized him as he rode a bike around town.
On the afternoon of August 1, Brown asked a clerk to bring him an iPad and other items at Target, 1101 West Jackson, Assistant State’s Attorney Lorraine Scaduto said in bond court Friday. When the employee began to ring up the purchases, he felt Brown leaning against him. Brown grabbed the items from the clerk’s hands, shoved him in the chest, and ran out a fire exit with the inventory, which was worth $1,067, Scaduto said.
Target distributed photos and details of the crime to its Chicago stores, and an employee at another location recognized Brown from a previous incident.
When cops stopped Brown on Thursday, he gave them a fake name and tried to ride away, Scaduto said. He allegedly elbowed two officers in their faces and pushed a third cop. One officer suffered a dislocated shoulder and a dislocated wrist while the other two reported pain and contusions, according to Scaduto.
Investigators linked Brown to a series of major thefts from Target stores across the city, Scaduto said. According to the allegations:
- on July 22, he took two security camera doorbells and 3 Bose soundbars worth a combined $1,050 from the store at 4433 South Pulaski
- on July 24, he took $1,262 worth of Apple products and liquor from the 2650 North Clark location
- on July 26, he took a laptop and alcohol from the 1200 North Larrabee store
- on July 27, he took $404 worth of liquor from the 1154 South Clark store
- on July 28, he took 12 bottles of alcohol from the 2656 North Elston location
- on July 29, he took Apple products from the 3300 North Ashland location
All of the alleged thefts were captured on video, and Brown got away by running out of fire escapes during most of the incidents, Scaduto said.
She told Judge Arthur Willis that Brown has two outstanding warrants from Wisconsin and four prior felony convictions in Illinois. Willis set bail at $250,000. Brown will need to post a $25,000 deposit bond to get out of jail before trial.
CPD did not have a mugshot available for Brown.