Man robbed Lakeview smoke shop, then robbed it again minutes later, prosecutors say

Chicago — Nearly two years after he allegedly robbed a Lakeview smoke shop, then went back and robbed it again minutes later, a Chicago man has been charged with the crime.

Chicago police identified Christopher Savage, 20, as the robber within five days of the April 24, 2021, heist at American Vapor Shop, 917 West Belmont, prosecutors said. But Savage spent much of the intervening time in custody for a robbery he committed as a juvenile.

Christopher Savage | Chicago Police Department; Yelp

During a bail hearing on Tuesday afternoon, prosecutor Sarah Dale-Schmidt asserted that Savage entered the store around 11:45 p.m. and began discussing products with an employee. When the worker stepped away to assist other customers, Savage accessed the register and fled with approximately $600 in cash, according to Dale-Schmidt.

The employee chased Savage to the Belmont CTA station and recovered the store’s money after a “scuffle.”

Savage wasn’t done, said Dale-Schmidt. He marched back into the store, grabbed his waistband, and demanded, “Where’s the sh*t?”

He reached into the register, took the money, and walked away. According to Dale-Schmidt, the employee did not chase Savage the second time because he thought he had a gun.

Chicago police transit officers who saw CTA video of the initial “scuffle” recognized Savage, so detectives included his picture in a photo line-up, and the employee picked him out five days later, Dale-Schmidt said.

At the time of the robbery, Savage was on juvenile probation for robbery, aggravated battery, and violating probation, Dale-Schmidt said. Four months after the smoke shop robbery, he was adjudicated delinquent for yet another robbery and received a sentence of 31 months in juvenile detention. He is still on juvenile parole for that case, she said.

According to his public defender, he has one child and recently began working as a custodian at Wrigley Field.

Judge Ahmad ordered him to pay a $5,000 bail deposit to go home on electronic monitoring.

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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