Prosecutors this week accused a man of robbing a downtown nightclub patron and then using the victim’s accounts to rack up over $14,000 in purchases and money transfers.
The allegations serve as a timely reminder to nightlife lovers as Chicago’s bars and restaurants resume late-night operations after a year in COVID mode. (Oh. And be sure to read through to the end for a very special surprise!)
It all started around 3 a.m. on February 23, 2020, when the alleged victim walked out of The Hangge Uppe, 14 West Elm, just off the “Viagra Triangle.”
When he got outside, prosecutors say, 29-year-old Antonio King and an accomplice asked him for some money. The man agreed, and he walked to a nearby Chase ATM where King and the other man allegedly looked over his shoulder as he withdrew $40.
As the man exited the bank vestibule, King and the accomplice threatened his life and took his wallet, phone, and credit cards from his pockets, prosecutors said. King then allegedly used the victim’s phone to order an Uber that took him to various locations where he used the stolen credit cards.
King allegedly racked up $3,400 in charges during one visit to a Walmart in Skokie. According to prosecutors, at a Walmart in Niles, he charged another $1,200 to the victim’s credit card. The stores’ surveillance cameras recorded both offenders using the victim’s cards, prosecutors said.
When it was all said and done, King allegedly charged more than $11,000 worth of purchases to the man’s stolen credit cards. Another $4,800 was withdrawn and transferred from the victim’s Cash App account, prosecutors said.
Detectives distributed images from the Walmart cameras to cops who patrol the downtown area. One of them recognized King “because he deals with him on a regular basis,” an assistant state’s attorney said during King’s bail hearing Friday.
Cops finally caught up with King last week in the 7400 block of South Shore Drive, according to CPD records.
Prosecutors charged him with felony robbery and identity theft. They said he identified himself in surveillance images from the bank ATM and both Walmart stores.
Judge Mary Marubio released him on his own recognizance but said he must go on electronic monitoring.
King, in addition to being familiar to some downtown cops, may be familiar to CWBChicago readers. We told you about him back in May 2017 after (this may sound familiar) a man reported being robbed at a bank ATM near Boystown.
When officers arrived at the bank, 3179 North Clark, they couldn’t find a victim, but they did recognize King and another man standing near the ATM.
The cops arrested King and Jonathan Stokes because they looked exactly like a couple of fellas who were seen on video using credit and debit cards that had been taken in another robbery the day before. According to police, they even had the same clothes that the dudes in the surveillance photo were wearing.
Prosecutors refused to charge King and Stokes with robbery, so the men only faced charges of theft of lost or mislaid property. The outcomes of their cases were not immediately available Sunday.
In the 2017 arrest report, police said Stokes and King were captured on surveillance video using credit cards taken from four men during a robbery in the 1400 block of West Warner.
In fact, King was wearing the same blue Cubs baseball hat and navy blue jacket with a white collar and patches that he wore at Target, according to court records.
“I hang out in front of Sluggers,” a bar near Wrigley Field, King allegedly blurted out as police took him into custody. “All the cops know me!”