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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