Chicago’s hard-working carjackers gave police plenty to do Saturday evening. At least four armed vehicular hijackings and attempted hijackings were reported in about two hours. None of the cases immediately appeared to be related.
The flurry of activity began around 6:30 p.m. in Streeterville. A driver told police that an armed man tried to take his Porsche on the fourth floor of a parking garage in the 400 block of East Illinois. The carjacking failed. Police, including some SWAT units, searched the garage for the gunman, but they came up empty-handed.
Then, around 6:40 p.m., two men displayed a handgun and took a man’s white Lexus RS350 in the 1400 block of North Maplewood. The offenders also scored the victim’s wallet and phone, which were in the car.
About a half-hour later, an armed man took a Near North Side resident’s 2020 Nissan Altima at gunpoint in the 1100 block of North Crosby.
Finally, three men armed with two handguns and a rifle took a couple’s white 2016 Mercedes in the 700 block of West Roosevelt. According to the victims, the trio pulled up in a black four-door sedan that had a fourth person driving.
Saturday’s final incident bore some similarities to a pattern of hold-ups and carjackings that Chicago police have been warning about over the past four weeks.
Detectives said in a community alert last week that between two and four offenders are approaching victims on the street to demand money and cars at gunpoint. Some of the more recent victims noted that the offenders’ weapons included a rifle.
A woman who was among four people to be robbed by that crew in Lakeview last week urged people to be careful.
“People are getting carjacked on the streets as they’re getting in and out of their cars,” the woman told us. “It’s scary, and I know a lot of people watch this account, so please warn them for me.”