CHICAGO — If you ever want to strike up a conversation with a Chicago police officer but don’t know how to break the ice, consider walking past their squad car wearing a face mask, hoodie, and rubber gloves.
That’s exactly what Travion Croft, 19, did, according to his latest Chicago police arrest report. Unfortunately, the report also says he had a gun in his backpack.
The officers were responding to a call of a person with a gun in the 6300 block of South Albany around 10 p.m. Saturday when Croft and two other young men walked in front of their unmarked patrol car wearing “dark clothing, hoods/face coverings, and blue latex gloves,” the report said.
According to the officers’ report, there have been auto thefts in the area, and they had “prior experience” encountering auto thieves who wear latex gloves to cover their fingerprints.
Croft and his two companions ran when the cops tried to talk to them, the report said. As the officers chased Croft, he allegedly stripped off his outer layer of clothing and tossed a backpack. The cops caught up with him in a nearby yard.
During an “excited utterance,” Croft said he dropped his jacket and backpack while running and went on to say he had a gun in the backpack, the arrest report continued.
Croft went on to explain that he got the firearm two days earlier by taking it away from someone who tried to rob him at gunpoint, the officers wrote.
He is charged with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, possessing a firearm with a defaced serial number, and misdemeanor reckless conduct. Judge Susana Ortiz released him on electronic monitoring.
The officers noted in their report that Croft told them he had never been arrested before.
There appears to be a discrepancy in that regard because we also found a Chicago police report indicating that the citywide carjacking task force arrested him on May 8.
According to that report, the task force found a stolen Kia Sportage in the 3200 block of West Division that had been used in “multiple” armed robberies. They set up surveillance on the Kia, which had a broken side window and a stripped steering column.
The cops moved in after Croft climbed into the driver’s seat, the report said. He ran, but the police caught him when he fled into a gangway that dead-ended at a locked gate.
In the report, they wrote that Croft told them “some random guy told him he could use the vehicle to smoke inside of.”
Prosecutors charged him with felony receiving or possessing a stolen motor vehicle. They dropped the case a month later, according to court records.