Chicago police have linked two incidents in Lakeview early Monday morning to a growing pattern of armed robberies that began last week, according to a community alert issued by Area One detectives. Investigators have linked at least 18 robberies to the crew.
Most of the crimes involve three or four offenders who confront victims at gunpoint on the street, police said.
The earliest incident linked to the crew occurred at 8 a.m. on March 23 in the 2700 block of Southport. They struck again at 12:47 a.m. on March 24 in the 4100 block of West Washington.
Then they went on a bold crime spree Saturday morning, police said, committing nine holdups in less than an hour. The crew traveled in two cars, a black Kia and a Jeep, according to reports reviewed by CWB Chicago:
- in the 2400 block of West Flournoy Avenue at 5:50 a.m.
- in the 4400 block of South Western Avenue at 5:55 a.m.
- in the 2300 block of South Western Avenue at 6:01 a.m.
- in the 2800 block of West 47th Street between 6:05 a.m. and 6:15 a.m.
- in the 4500 block of South Ashland Avenue at 6:26 a.m.
- in the 4600 block of South McDowell Avenue at 6:30 a.m.
- in the 1100 block of West 47th Street at 6:35 a.m. and again at 6:40 a.m.
- in the 600 block of West 47th Street at 6:40 a.m.
Among the items taken in the 1100 block of West 47th Street was a BMW sedan, which the crew used to commit its next set of robberies on Sunday:
- in the 4400 block of South Kedzie at 3:15 p.m.
- in the 2500 block of West 47th Street at 4:05 p.m.
- in the 2900 block of West 38th Place at 4:08 p.m.
- in the 3000 block of West 38th Place at 4:10 p.m.
On Sunday evening, the group returned to the streets and robbed a victim in the 500 block of South Kostner at 10:50 p.m. before making their way to Lakeview.
Once they arrived, they confronted a 39-year-old man at gunpoint in the 500 block of West Surf Street around 12:04 a.m. Police said the victim was outside when a black SUV and another car pulled up. Two men exited the cars and demanded his property at gunpoint, then drove away in the vehicles.
About 15 minutes later, they stole a Toyota Avalon that a 38-year-old man left running while he ran into Taco Bell, 3001 North Broadway, a CPD report said. A friend of the victim saw the auto theft as it happened, and he invited the victim into his car to chase after the Avalon, a police spokesperson said.
The men eventually caught up with the stolen Avelon near Belmont and Lake Shore Drive. They told police that they saw the occupants of the Avalon talking to people inside a Nissan Altima, and someone in the Altima displayed a gun, according to a CPD spokesperson.
They also told the police that they believed the offender fired a shot at them, but the police did not find any shell casings at the scene. A freelance reporter for CWBChicago who was walking in the area said he heard gunfire and the sound of a car speeding away near Belmont and Lake Shore Drive at the time of the incident.
Detectives described the suspects in CPD’s community alert as three or four Black males between 15 and 17 years old.
Anyone with information about the crimes can contact Area One detectives at 312-747-8384. Refer to crime pattern 23-CWP-014.