Armed robbers hit stores in Lakeview, Old Town

Police are investigating the weekend armed robberies of a Lakeview smoke shop and a Walgreens in Old Town. The hold-ups are not believed to be connected.

Most recently, a man displayed a handgun and robbed the Walgreens at 1601 North Wells around 7:12 a.m. Sunday, according to a CPD report. The offender demanded unspecified items from the 20-year-old cashier and fled, according to Officer Anthony Spicuzza.

CPD surveillance video shows the gunman running across North Avenue and into an alley after the hold-up. There, he changed clothing behind a construction site and fled southbound on LaSalle Street, according to police records.

He is described as a thin Black male who stands about 6’3” tall. Footage shows him initially wearing an olive green jacket with the word KANIN written on the front and a blue Chicago Bulls hat. He discarded those items in the alley and was then seen wearing a light gray sweatshirt, a black t-shirt, and a black knit cap.

Late Saturday night, a man robbed the American Vapor Shop, 917 West Belmont, according to police. The offender robbed the store and its employee before escaping on a train from the nearby Belmont CTA station just before midnight, officers said.

Investigators believe the man was part of a group that took part in a series of otherwise minor incidents in Lakeview and downtown on Saturday night. He is described as a 6’3”-tall Black male who wore a camouflage puffy coat, white Nike gym shoes, and faded jeans.

Area Three detectives are investigating both robberies.

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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