Bungling burglars busted after cops see them walking out of house with crowbar, prosecutors say

Two bungling burglars face a fresh round of felony charges after cops allegedly saw them walking out of a Lincoln Park home with a crowbar Thursday afternoon.

According to prosecutors, an officer who saw Anthony Miller and Gino Wanko walk out of the house on the 2200 block of North Lakewood trailed them in his car while backup units descended on the area.

Miller approached a man who was sitting in a car and asked the driver for a ride while reaching through the vehicle’s driver’s side window, prosecutors said. The driver had other ideas. Believing that Miller, 23. was about to carjack him, the man slammed his car into reverse, sending Miller flying to the pavement, according to prosecutors. A cop took the opportunity to arrest Miller.

Meanwhile, other officers allegedly saw Wanko, 22, hopping fences in the area. They arrested him after a brief foot chase.

Gino Wanko (left) and Anthony Miller | CPD

Surveillance video from a home in the area shows Miller and Wanko getting out of a car and entering the victim’s home, prosecutors said. The car left while they were inside, according to the allegations. Another surveillance camera allegedly captured images of Miller changing clothes in a gangway after the incident.

Prosecutors said nothing appeared to be taken from the home, but the front door was damaged, and some desks and drawers were rifled inside. In fact, one of the burglars apparently lost money on the project by leaving a pair of sunglasses inside the home, according to a CPD report.

Miller is charged with unlawful vehicular invasion and residential burglary. He has a pending aggravated battery case in DuPage County and a pending theft case in Cook County, prosecutors said. Judge John Lyke ordered him held without bail for violating the terms of bail in the theft case and set bail at $50,000 in the Lincoln Park case. Miller will have to go on electronic monitoring if he manages to get released, Lyke said.

Wanko, who has another residential burglary case pending, was held in lieu of $5,000 bail for the new case. He’ll need to go onto electronic monitoring if he can post a $500 deposit bond. But he won’t be able to do that right away. Lyke ordered him held without bail for violating the terms of bail in the earlier burglary case.

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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