Seeing double? Suspects in recent CTA robbery bulletins may be the same people

CHICAGO — Surveillance images included in two Chicago police bulletins about robberies on CTA train platforms this month appear to show the same suspects, a sharp-eyed CWBChicago reader noted.

On Saturday, CPD’s Mass Transit detectives released surveillance images of three suspects involved in an armed robbery at the Jackson Blue Line station downtown on April 30. The victim was sitting on a bench when the three walked up, displayed a gun, and demanded his property, the bulletin said.

But two of the suspects seen in surveillance images that police included in the alert appear to be the same people who robbed three high school students at the Racine Blue Line station on April 29 — the day before the Jackson platform holdup.

Just after 9 p.m. that night, three 17-year-old boys walked to the Racine stop after attending an event at nearby Whitney Young Magnet School. As they walked down the ramp to the platform, two men confronted them with a handgun and took their phones and wallets.

Mass Transit investigators released surveillance images of the Racine station suspects on May 1. And they look a lot like the Jackson robbers.

CTA surveillance photos of two suspects wanted for an armed robbery at the Jackson Blue Line are accompanied by (inset) CTA surveillance images of suspects from an armed robbery at the Racine Blue Line station on April 29. | Chicago Police Department

An eagle-eyed CWB reader quickly realized that the people seen in our story about the Jackson Blue Line robbery looked just like the suspects in our May 1 story about the Racine Blue Line holdup.

Police said the robbers were also seen at the Pulaski Blue Line station on the night the high school students were robbed.

So far, no arrests have been announced. Tips can be shared with investigators at 312-745-4706.

Robbery reports across Chicago are up 17% this year compared to 2022, according to the latest Chicago Police Department CompStat report. Robberies are also up 35% from 2021, 27% compared to 2020, and 29% from 2019.

The good news is that reports in CTA stations and on CTA trains and platforms are down through the first four months of the year, with 106 cases reported as of May 1. But the city’s crime data shows that incidents are still far more common on a per-passenger basis than during pre-pandemic years when ridership was significantly higher.

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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