Prosecutors say a woman who crashed a stolen car near Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s home on Friday night was wearing pilfered belly button rings worth several thousand dollars when cops arrested her.
Priscilla Ferguson, 25, is charged with possessing a stolen motor vehicle, driving on a suspended license, and fleeing-eluding. So far, though, she is not charged with stealing the belly button jewelry. Judge Mary Marubio said she could go home on electronic monitoring by paying a $1,000 bail deposit.
While the car’s owner was at work on Friday, his brother entered his apartment and let Ferguson and her sister in, too, prosecutor James Konstantopoulos said. According to surveillance video, they stayed in the home for over an hour, cooking food, and stealing $10,000 worth of jewelry, including watches worth $4,000 and four bejeweled belly button rings, Konstantopoulos alleged.
The car’s owner arrived home to discover his brother sleeping in his apartment and his car and other property gone.
Shortly before 11 p.m. Friday, Ferguson and another woman stole food from a 7-Eleven and told the clerk not to try anything because they had a weapon, Konstantopoulos continued. The clerk took a picture of the stolen car, including its license plate, as they drove away and contacted police.
Officers later spotted the vehicle and tried to pull it over, but the driver sped away and eventually crashed near the intersection of Schubert and Drake avenues, about a block from Lightfoot’s home.
Cops found Ferguson sitting on a nearby porch and took her into custody. Konstantopoulos said she admitted to being in the apartment earlier in the day.
She allegedly told police that she struck a deal with her sister: the sister would keep the “watches and stuff” while Ferguson got to keep the car.
During a custody search, police found that she was wearing the stolen belly button rings, Konstantopoulos said.
He told the judge that Ferguson pleaded guilty to theft in a 2017 case that began as a more serious robbery charge and that she was on bond for a pending misdemeanor theft case.
But we found Chicago police records showing that she has been arrested four other times in the past two years, including for criminal trespass to vehicle in January and again in February. What happened to those cases?
According to court records:
- She was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance on June 15, 2020. Prosecutors dropped the case.
- On January 15, 2022, she was charged with criminal trespass to a vehicle and pleaded guilty on May 11. Her sentence was one day, time served.
- While that case was pending, she was charged with criminal trespass to a vehicle again on February 4. She stopped showing up for court in April and the case is still pending.
- She was arrested for retail theft on May 27. That case is still pending, too.