After witnesses failed to appear in court, he got out of jail because prosecutors had to drop 2 robbery cases against him. Guess what happened next.

Shawn Dodd (2018) | CPD

When prosecutors charged Shawn Dodd with robbing two stores in the Loop last summer and stabbing one of the store’s employees, the system seemed to be working well.

Chicago police detectives investigated the two crimes and arrested Dodd nearly two months later. Prosecutors filed felony charges, including a Class X armed robbery count. And a Cook County judge set significant bail conditions that kept Dodd in jail.

But witnesses in the robbery cases failed to appear in court within the 30-day statutory period, and prosecutors temporarily dismissed the charges on October 6, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office said Tuesday.

Less than a month later, the 26-year-old allegedly pulled a knife on two employees while robbing a downtown CVS. He’s back behind bars now, held without bail and facing charges in all three cases.

Here’s what happened.

On September 7, prosecutors charged Dodd with stabbing a cellular store worker in the arm four times while stealing 25 phone chargers on the 100 block of West Madison in July. They also charged him with threatening an employee who confronted him as he stole a garbage bag full of merchandise from Walgreens, 79 West Monroe, five days after the first incident.

Judge John Lyke set bail at $75,000 and ordered electronic monitoring as a condition of release. But Dodd was unable to raise bail, and he stayed in jail until October 6, when prosecutors dropped the case because witnesses failed to appear.

“After the cases were dismissed, we subsequently sought a grand jury indictment to move forward with the prosecution of these cases,” a spokesperson for the state’s attorney’s office said Tuesday.

That indictment came back on October 19, charging Dodd with Class X armed robbery, three counts of aggravated battery, and aggravated unlawful restraint, according to court records. Judge Thomas Hennelly ordered the court clerk to notify Dodd that he needed to appear in court on November 9 to face the charges.

One week before Dodd failed to appear for that court date, he walked into the CVS at 101 North Clinton and began loading Duracell batteries into his bookbag, prosecutors said last week. When two employees asked him to leave, Dodd allegedly pulled out a knife, pointed it at the women, and — referring to the store security guard by name — said, “What’s Rodney going to do?”

He left with $1,150 worth of Duracell batteries and remained at large, according to prosecutors.

A judge issued an arrest warrant on the two earlier robberies when he didn’t appear in court on November 9. Chicago police arrested him at his home on December 6, and he has been held without bail ever since. Detectives recently linked him to the CVS robbery after the store’s employees identified him in photo line-ups, according to a CPD report. He was charged in the case last week.

Dodd has been arrested in Chicago 22 times since he turned 18 in 2014, according to CPD records.

In February 2016, he pleaded guilty to punching a 53-year-old woman and robbing her of $30 in the 5900 block of North Kenmore. Judge William Lacy sentenced him to three years, but also recommended Dodd for an alternative boot camp program.

In August 2018, Dodd was charged with misdemeanors for allegedly grabbing cash from a man’s hand at the Addison Red Line station. When the victim caught up with Dodd outside of Wrigley Field, Dodd punched him in the face and ran away, according to a CPD report.

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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