4 tourists among latest victims of armed robbery crews in Wicker Park, West Loop

Chicago police now believe at least two armed robbery crews are working the city’s North Side, Near West Side, and downtown areas, targeting victims from Lakeview to Wicker Park to Streeterville and beyond.

One group robbed four people in Wicker Park yesterday evening, including two tourists. The other group robbed four people in the West Loop on Monday night, including two more tourists outside their hotel.

CPD has publicly linked 22 robberies to the groups, but the offenders are likely responsible for even more crimes.

Robbery crew #1

The most recent robbery spree occurred in Wicker Park yesterday evening.

At around 6:58 p.m., three victims were walking through an alley in the 1700 block of West Ellen when three men arrived in a silver SUV, according to a CPD spokesperson. The robbers got out of the vehicle and robbed the victims—a 64-year-old man and women ages 26 and 28—at gunpoint. They took two phones and escaped in the SUV, which may be a Chevy Trailblazer.

Police gave two victims a ride back to their hotel in the Loop.

The same group robbed a woman in the 1200 block of North Wood just moments after that robbery, according to CPD.

Area Five detectives say the same crew is responsible for a series of robberies in Avondale and Logan Square on Monday morning.

Typically, the men point handguns at the victims’ faces or heads while demanding their valuables, according to CPD. The suspects are Black males between 18- and 20-years-old who stand 5’9″ or 5’10” tall, according to police. The men wear black or gray hoodies with black ski masks and carry handguns or rifles.

Detectives issued a community alert overnight that links the group to robberies at the following locations and times:

Robbery crew #2

The second group of robbers’ operation strongly resembles the first crew’s, according to CPD. The offenders roll up on victims on the street and display handguns while demanding valuables. This team has been seen using a dark-colored four-door sedan, according to police. But the most recent victims said the robbers were using a white car, according to CPD reports.

They struck four times in the West Loop and River West on Monday evening:

  • At 10:40 p.m., four men got out of a car with guns to rob a man and his friend in the 900 block of West Huron. The offenders demanded the victims’ phone codes, then escaped in a white car, possibly a Toyota Corolla.
  • Around 11 p.m., the group robbed two hotel guests of their phones, shoes, and wallets, in the 300 block of North Morgan, according to a CPD report. They put guns to the back of the victims’ heads during the robbery and escaped in a white Toyota.
  • Shortly after 11 p.m., the crew tried to rob a group of friends in the 900 block of West Van Buren. Most of the would-be victims ran away, but at least one victim was robbed of his phone and wallet.

CPD issued a separate community alert about this group on Tuesday. Detectives said the suspects are Black Males between 25- and 30-years-old who stand 5’6″ to 6’2″ tall and wear dark clothing with ski masks.

According to the alert, this group is responsible for robberies at the following locations and times:

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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