Off-duty cop carjacked in River North, second hijacking reported in West Loop

CHICAGO — An off-duty police officer was carjacked in River North on Tuesday night. Another armed carjacking was reported less than an hour later in the West Loop. Chicago police have not made any arrests.

In River North, two men armed with handguns robbed a man in the 500 block of West Grand around 10 p.m., a CPD media statement said. They escaped in his red VW Jetta. The victim, who was not hurt, is an off-duty police officer, according to two sources, but we were unable to confirm which agency he works for.

Then, a 36-year-old man was carjacked in the 1100 block of West Hubbard around 10:49 p.m., a CPD spokesperson said. He had just stepped out of his white 2024 BMW M6 when two hijackers approached him from behind.

One of the offenders held him at gunpoint while the other took his valuables, including his car keys, a CPD spokesperson said. They drove away with his car, heading west on Hubbard Street with accomplices following in a black sedan, possibly a Chevy Malibu, the spokesperson said.

Carjacking reports, while still high compared to most years this millennium, are down sharply in 2024. CPD handled 195 cases through March 18, down from 269 during the same period last year. By comparison, the city had 217 carjackings during January 2021 alone, the most in any month this millennium.

However, robbery reports—carjackings are a robbery subcategory—continue to rise this year citywide. They’re up 3% as of Monday, sitting at the highest level in at least five years. The situation is worse in some neighborhoods.

In CPD’s Near North (18th) District, which includes neighborhoods from River North to Lincoln Park, robberies are up 10%. They’re up 48% in the Lakeview-based Town Hall (19th) District, which patrols the northern third of Lincoln Park north into Uptown. Robberies are up 81% in the Rogers Park (24th) District and up 44% in the Lincoln (20th) District, which includes Edgewater and parts of Uptown and Lincoln Square.

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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 news@cwbchicago.com