CHICAGO — On September 21, the fourth day of cashless bail in Illinois, Sebastian Perez appeared before Judge Linzey Jones on charges of aggravated possession of a stolen motor vehicle and aggravated fleeing from police in Lyons. Jones sent Perez home with instructions to stay out of trouble and show up for court.
About five weeks later, prosecutors now say, Perez carjacked and robbed two men at gunpoint and posted a video of himself with the vehicle’s license plates boasting, “We got keys to this b*tch!”
Perez, 20, is now residing at the Cook County jail after Judge Charles Beach ordered him detained as a public safety threat following a hearing on the robbery and carjacking allegations on Saturday.
Back on September 20, Lyons police arrested Perez near 1st Avenue and 47th Street after he allegedly tried to speed away from them in a stolen car. Judge Jones cut him loose the next day.
Just 53 days later, Perez and another man confronted two brothers who were entering a 2013 Infiniti G37 in the 7000 block of South Hermitage, prosecutors say. The brothers, ages 19 and 20, also lost their wallets, phones, and credit cards in the holdup.
Cops located the hijacked car within 24 hours, and Perez was behind the wheel, Beach noted in his detention order. But the investigation into the carjacking continued, and police secured a search warrant for Perez’s phone.
According to Beach’s order, the search revealed a photo and video time-stamped “immediately after” the hijacking of Perez inside the Infiniti, stating, “We got keys to this b*tch!”
Officials said the search also turned up text messages of Perez trying to sell the car and a video of Perez in possession of the car’s license plates moments after it was hijacked.
A fugitive task force arrested Perez at the Bridgeview Courthouse to face charges in the robbery and carjacking after he showed up for a court appearance on Friday.
He is charged with two counts of aggravated robbery while armed with a firearm and aggravated vehicular hijacking with a firearm.
In an interesting twist, the 20-year-old carjacking victim’s social media profile picture shows him smiling broadly alongside Cook County Chief Judge Timothy Evans, a champion of “bail reform.”