Men sleeping in stolen Maserati had 2 machine guns, a rifle, and a car key fob duplicator, prosecutors say

CHICAGO – Four men had an assault-style rifle, two pistols outfitted to fire like machine guns, a device used to duplicate auto key fobs, narcotics, and other items when Chicago police officers found them sleeping inside a stolen Maserati last weekend, prosecutors say.

According to court records, Judge Maryam Ahmad ordered all four men detained, three due to the nature of the charges filed against them and the fourth on out-of-state arrest warrants.

Officers went to the 100 block of West 87th Street around 2:45 a.m. on Saturday, March 2, after someone reported that there were people asleep with firearms inside a Maserati. When they arrived, the cops found four men sleeping in a stolen 2015 Maserati Ghibli, according to arrest reports filed against the men.

A passenger in the back seat had an AR-style rifle on his lap, police said. And the driver allegedly had another gun tucked under his right thigh. So, the officers did not announce that they were there because they did not want to “lose the tactical advantage and startle the sleeping offenders who had ballistically superior weapons inside the vehicle,” one report said.

From left: Arquis Alexander, Martice Smith, and Tyand Wilson (Chicago Police Department)

After forcibly removing the slumbering men from the Maserati, the cops took a closer look at what they were dealing with.

They recovered a loaded 40-caliber handgun with an extended magazine and an auto-fire switch attachment on the driver’s seat where Arquis Alexander, 22, was dozing, one report said. According to the report, that firearm had been reported stolen from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Judge Maryam Ahmad noted in a signed detention order that Alexander is on probation for burglary.

A rear-seat passenger, Tyand Wilson, 18, had a loaded pistol with an extended magazine and auto-fire switch lying at his feet, according to his arrest report. Ahmad wrote that she detained him because, among other things, he is on supervised release from the juvenile detention system for carjacking, and he had five adjudications for violent crimes between 2021 and 2022.

The other backseat passenger, Matrice Smith, 30, was the one allegedly seen sleeping with a loaded assault-style rifle on his lap. It was also equipped with an extended magazine, prosecutors said in a detention petition.

A bookbag near Smith allegedly contained three additional “Glock switches,” the illegal after-market devices that allow ordinary semi-automatic pistols to generate machine gun-like automatic gunfire. The bag also contained 16 suspected oxycodone pills, a digital scale, and a black ski mask, according to police.

According to reports generated by CPD, officers also found a car key fob programmer and blank key fobs in the back seat.

Smith, a four-time convicted felon, is on parole for unlawful use of a weapon by a felon, and he has three previous convictions for forcible felonies, Ahmad said in his detention order. Illinois Department of Corrections records show he was released from prison on December 26.

He is charged with Class X armed habitual criminal, three counts of unlawful use of a machine gun, possession of burglary tools, two counts of possessing a controlled substance, and criminal trespass to a vehicle.

Alexander is charged with unlawful use of a machine gun, aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, possession of a stolen firearm, possession of a stolen motor vehicle, possession of a controlled substance, possession of burglary tools, and driving on a suspended license.

Wilson is charged with unlawful use of a machine gun, possession of burglary tools, and criminal trespass to a vehicle.

The fourth person allegedly found in the vehicle, Ramanze Robinson, 22, is charged with possession of burglary tools, misdemeanor counts of possession of ammunition without a firearms license, and criminal trespass to a vehicle. Ahmad detained him on two outstanding warrants from Indiana.

Details about those warrants were not immediately available. According to online news reports, he was charged in June 2022 with robbery in LaPorte County, Indiana.

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About Tim Hecke 372 Articles
Tim Hecke is CWBChicago's managing partner. He started his career at KMOX, the legendary news radio station in St. Louis. From there, he moved on to work at stations in Minneapolis, Chicago, and New York City. Tim went on to build syndicated radio news and content services that served every one of America's 100 largest radio markets. He became CWBChicago's managing partner in 2019. His email address is tim@cwbchicago.com