Chicago — Yet another wave of armed robberies rolled across Chicago on Saturday morning. It started in the Loop around 5:45 a.m. and ended just over an hour later in Lincoln Park. At least 11 victims were robbed in 10 separate incidents as the group of three or four gunmen traveled across the North Side in a stolen Hyundai SUV, stopping to rob victims along the way in North Center, Avondale, Lakeview, and Albany Park.
In general, the victims told police that two or three males exited the white SUV and robbed them at gunpoint on the streets and sidewalks. Some victims said the group placed guns to their heads and necks, according to preliminary reports.
The robberies began around 5:45 a.m. when the crew held up a victim near a bus stop at Michigan and Adams in the Loop. That victim described the group’s getaway car as a white Hyundai SUV with a broken rear passenger window covered with a towel. Other victims and witnesses would describe seeing a similar car.
According to preliminary information:
- The group robbed a woman on the corner of Dearborn and Monroe as she walked to work around 5:45 a.m.
- A white SUV pulled in front of a woman at the intersection of Michigan and Chicago avenues around 5:48 a.m. Three men, all carrying guns, placed the gun to her neck and took her wallet, phone, and purse.
- Around 6:12 a.m., a man was robbed outside Starbucks, 1900 West Montrose, by three men who fled in a white Hyundai SUV.
- Moments later, three or four men robbed a man of his backpack, which contained a laptop, in the 3600 block of North Lincoln.
- Four men robbed a husband and wife at gunpoint in the 4300 block of North Albany around 6:30 a.m.
- Another robbery occurred in the 4100 block of North Sacramento around 6:33 a.m.
- At about 6:40 a.m., three men jumped out of a white SUV in the 3500 block of North Spaulding, pulled guns on a woman, and tried to rob her. But she managed to get away, and nothing was taken.
- The group moved back across the river to rob a man at gunpoint in the 3100 block of North Damen at 6:47 a.m. That victim told police that two men who got out of a white SUV put guns to his head and took his shoulder bag and phone.
- Three minutes later, another man was targeted in the 1000 block of West Wellington
- Just before 7 a.m., three armed men robbed a man of his passport, phone, and backpack in the 2300 block of North Lakewood in Lincoln Park.
Police reports reviewed by CWB Chicago showed that the victims generally described the group as masked Black males who appeared to be in their teens.
Chicago police have responded to similar waves of robberies recently. Officers arrested two people who ran from a stolen car that was used during a spree across River North, Wicker Park, and the West Loop on Thursday morning. The department has not announced any charges, though.
Other waves were reported on March 20, March 22, and March 27. Police are also investigating three robbery sprees that targeted 7-Eleven stores in the area. Those crimes occurred on March 27, March 29, and March 31.
Update: Subsequent to our report, Chicago police released a community alert about the robbery spree. In it, detectives linked all of these crimes to the same group and said the offenders committed an additional robbery around 3:28 a.m. in the 3500 block of South Leavitt.
According to the alert, the suspects are three or four Black males between 18 and 22 years old who wore dark hoodies, dark pants, and dark ski masks.