Man charged with trying to steal laptop from Chicago police squad car

Tomas Villa | CPD

Breaking into a car? Dumb. Breaking into an unmarked police car while officers are handling a call nearby? That’s really dumb.

But Tomas Villa vehemently denies that he did such a thing. Prosecutors and Chicago police disagree.

Cops went to the 1600 block of South Fairfield around 10:30 Monday night to handle a domestic incident, prosecutors said, and a couple of the officers arrived in an unmarked CPD vehicle.

As police handled the domestic, a witness walked up to a police sergeant and reported that someone was inside the unmarked car. A group of officers turned toward the car and saw 20-year-old Tomas Villa inside, Assistant State’s Attorney Brian Burkhardt said.

Cops arrested Villa after a brief foot chase and then discovered two brackets that secure a laptop computer inside the unmarked vehicle were broken, Burkhardt said. The entire incident was allegedly captured on CPD body cameras.

“That was a lie. I never did that,” Villa told Judge Mary Marubio after she told him he’s being charged with burglary to an automobile.

Villa had no connection to the domestic battery call that brought cops to the scene, Burkhardt said.

Prosecutors said Villa has two pending felony cases — one for domestic battery and one for reckless conduct. Judge Marubio ordered him held without bail for violating the terms of release in those two cases. She gave him a recognizance bond in the burglary case and ordered him to stay in the house from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. if he is released.

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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