Chicago — Prosecutors have charged a paroled burglar with breaking into three homes on the North Side, starting less than four months after he got out of prison for a series of burglary and looting-related crimes.
Back in May 2019, Kevin Purdis was charged with burglarizing a Lincoln Park home while he was on electronic monitoring for allegedly using credit cards that were taken during burglaries. He sat in jail until a judge agreed to let him out due to concerns about the dangers of the COVID pandemic.
Four months later, he was arrested again after police said they found $4,000 worth of looting proceeds in his car on the Near North Side.
He put all of those cases to rest in October 2021: Judge Diana Kenworthy sentenced him to two years for one ID theft case. Prosecutors dropped others. And he received six years for the Lincoln Park burglary and one year for stealing the looted merchandise, records show. He was released in April.
Purdis was yet arrested again last Thursday in the 200 block of West Division after CPD surveillance officers recognized him as a man who had just burglarized a home in North Center.
Patrol officers stopped Purdis and found collector coins, jewelry, a Nintendo Switch, an iPad, and a PlayStation 5 that had been taken earlier in the day from a home in the 1900 block of West Patterson in North Center, officials said.
Using surveillance video, detectives also linked Purdis to an August 12, 2022, burglary in the 3200 block of North Damen and another in the 900 block of West Cornelia on January 23, said prosecutor Lorraine Scaduto.
Computers, watches, cash, and gaming consoles were taken from those victims.
Scaduto said Purdis told officers that the stolen items cops found in his backpack had been purchased from a fence named “Pacheco.” But when detectives told him that they were actually investigating him for more than one burglary, he clammed up, she said.
During Purdis’ bail hearing, his public defender said the Lincoln Park High School graduate is the “proud father of two children” who works full-time as a maintenance worker and also volunteers at his daughter’s school.
Judge David Kelly ordered Purdis to pay a $3,000 bail deposit to be released on electronic monitoring. Purdis is charged with three counts of residential burglary and theft of lost or mislaid property.
Despite his background, the Illinois Department of Corrections has decided not to revoke his parole, Scaduto said.
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