Saturday, December 16, 2017

#5: Woman Carjacked At Gunpoint In Lakeview Tonight

The woman was near Kenmore and Barry when two men carjacked her around 7:30 p.m. Saturday. | Google
11:44PM UPDATE: The following information has been received from CPD.  The victim, 31, was sitting in her parked car when a man walked up and told her to open her door while implying that he had a gun.

After she was out of the car, a second man  took the victim's backpack with a laptop, phone, and money inside. Police described the offenders only as being male and black. The car was found unoccupied late tonight in the 3000 block of West Lexington in the Garfield Park neighborhood. No one is in custody.

Our original report follows.
Police are investigating the armed carjacking of a woman in Lakeview on Saturday evening.

The woman told police that she was near Kenmore and Barry when two men approached and took her car at gunpoint around 7:30 p.m.

Officers tracked the four-door, black Chevy Cruze heading south on Halsted Street, but they lost the tracking signal on the DePaul campus, police said. The car's plate number begins with "Z258."

Also taken with the car were the Logan Square woman’s purse, laptop, and phone.

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The police department’s Office of News Affairs does not yet have a description of the offenders. CWBChicago will update this story when the department’s information is completed.

Tonight’s carjacking is the fifth in the Town Hall police district since Tuesday, but the first in Lakeview. Four of the crimes have involved armed men.


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Arrested 40 Times, Lakeview's "In 'n' Out Burglar" Returns

You will NOT believe this one.

So, a few days ago, we published a recap of sentences handed down to four local burglars. We left off a fifth man—Ryan Brandis. It'd be tedious to recap everything we'd ever reported on the guy only to say that he had recently been released on probation.
Facebook pic of Brandis at correctional boot camp. | Facebook

Here's what we didn't publish on Wednesday. Read on. It's worth it.

In 2013 and 2014, Brandis became infamous as a ginger-topped thief who unleashed a relentless attack on Lakeview bike storage rooms and laundry facilities (where he stole change from cash boxes).

Our first piece about him ran in November 2013, telling the story of how he found his way from Streator, IL, to take up residence at the Broadway Youth Center in Lakeview. And how he managed to be arrested repeatedly.

Eleven days later, Brandis was arrested again for burglary.

In less than a month, Brandis copped a plea and went to jail—only the second time he had been sentenced to do time despite having more than 38 arrests in three years.

Shortly after being paroled, he selected a new Facebook profile pic: a photo of unattended bicycles at the Ravenswood Metra station.

And in March 2015, Brandis was arrested for stealing bikes at Clark and Belmont.

But Cook County Judge Marvin Luckman set Brandis free, saying there was no probable cause to arrest him for the Clark/Belmont bike thefts. That’s despite the fact that multiple passers-by saw what happened and held Brandis for cops. (It was here that we gave Brandis a nickname: “The In-n-Out Burglar.”)

About a month after Luckman cut Brandis loose, he was arrested for battery. He was convicted and sentenced to 30 days.

Also in May 2015, a grand jury essentially reversed Luckman’s “no probable cause” finding by returning a three-count “true bill” against Brandis in the Clark/Belmont bike theft case.

Brandis sat in Cook County Jail from that day until a judge sentenced him to two-years mental health probation on November 9.

So that’s the long story about Ryan Brandis that we left out of our burglary recap on Wednesday.

Man Charged With Uptown Burglary

Brandis | Chicago Police Dept
A South Side man was arrested in Uptown Friday afternoon and charged with stealing a bicycle from an apartment building storage room.

Ryan Brandis, 30, was arrested at 3:27 p.m. in the 4600 block of North Broadway after being positively identified as the thief, police said.

Brandis is charged with one felony count of burglary. He is being held without bail.

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Lincoln Square Carjacking Fail; Mom Won't Give Up Her Kids

The would-be carjacker is seen approaching the woman on Thursday in this CBS2 screengrab.| CBS2Chicago
A masked man approached a woman as she pumped gas in Lincoln Square Thursday afternoon and demanded that she hand over the keys to her car. But the woman refused—because her kids were in the car.

It was the fourth known carjacking attempt in the Town Hall police district this week.

The woman was fueling up around 2:35 p.m. at the Mobil station, 4638 North Damen, when the would-be carjacker approached.

Annual Renewing Tiers

The woman described the offender as a Hispanic man who wore a black mask and a black jacket or hoodie.

Unfortunately, the woman did not file a police report. Until she does the incident won’t show up in crime stats, and the police department won’t be able to take the attempt into consideration as they plan an anti-carjacking strategy.

CBS2’s Dana Kozlov tracked the mother down on Friday, one day after we revealed the incident on our @CWBChicago Twitter feed.

“He was like, ‘Give me your keys,’” the woman told Kozlov, who noted that “the suspect seems to case her parked car before demanding her keys.”

Check out surveillance video of the incident at CBS2’s site HERE.

Map of known carjackings this week in the Town Hall police district.
Two drivers were carjacked at gunpoint in the Roscoe Village area on Monday evening. And an Uber driver had his car taken by a gunman in North Center on Wednesday.

The Uber driver’s car was later found abandoned in Logan Square, according to a source.
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Friday, December 15, 2017

Double-Shooting In Uptown Friday Night

Two men were shot in Uptown Friday night—the fourth shooting incident to claim multiple victims in that neighborhood since November 1.

The men, both 20, were walking in the 800 block of West Windsor around 10:50 p.m. when a masked man emerged from a white vehicle and opened fire, witnesses said.

The shooter got back into the car and headed east.

Seven shell casings were found at the scene.

Both victims were reported in good condition at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center. One was shot in his upper left thigh, the other in the right shin.

Neither of the victims has an adult arrest record in Chicago, according to police files. The men are graduates of Lane Tech and Uplift high schools.
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Thursday, December 14, 2017

COPS: Denied Access To River North Bar, Man Zapped Doorman With Stun Gun (And Other Weird Stories)

Hernandez | Chicago Police Dept
What’s wrong, champ? Doorman won’t let ya in da club?

Just zap him with your handy Guard Dog Security iStun 4000. That’s what a Lower West Side man did in River North last week, according to prosecutors.

Around 10 p.m. last Thursday, a bouncer told Omar Hernandez that he was not allowed inside Rockit Bar, 22 West Hubbard.

Hernandez proceeded to press a stun gun to the doorman’s chin and push the “ZAP!” button “in an effort to gain entry,” police were told.

A Guard Dog Security iStun 4000 | Guard Dog
Rockit Bar staff detained the 30-year-old and turned him (and his Guard Dog Security iStun 4000) over to police, court records say.

The 25-year-old doorman declined medical assistance and was not seriously injured.

Hernandez, on the other hand, was not so lucky. He was transported to Northwestern Memorial Medical center for treatment of “incident-related injuries,” police said.

He is charged with unlawful use of a weapon and battery.

• • • •

Weekly | Cook County Sheriff
Shoplifting arrest reports are among the more boring documents you’ll ever read. Except on those occasions when the defendant is accused of selecting something unusual to steal.

Take Mario Weekly. The 34-year-old was arrested at the State Street Target store on November 24. Store security says he tried to leave without paying for $1,411 worth of Mucinex. That’s quite a haul. An average package of the cold and cough medicine retails for $11 to $21, according to Target’s website.

Making things a little thornier for Weekly: He was found to be in possession of “a large bundle of mail” addressed to occupants of a nearby highrise.

Weekly, who has a long history of theft arrests, is charged with felony retail theft and theft of lost or mislaid property. His bail is set at $50,000.

• • • •

Johnson (inset), Navy Pier (center) and the Jardine plant (left)
Folks travel from far and wide to get a little crazy in Chicago. It happens. More than a few out-of-towners are arrested each year trying to break into Soldier Field or the Friendly Confines.

But Blake Johnson of Omaha, NE, is the first tourist we know of who’s been accused of breaking into the city’s water treatment plant.

Police were called to Navy Pier around 9:30 a.m. on November 25 after someone reported that a trespasser had fled from the IMAX theater and jumped over a fence to enter the Jardine Water Filtration Plant.

Johnson was charged with two misdemeanor counts of trespassing.

He’s also charged with one count of misdemeanor criminal damage to property because Navy Pier security footage allegedly showed him throwing a potted plant into the water treatment facility before police arrived.

Told ya. The tourists are crazy.

Accused Of Kicking And Throwing An Elderly Dog, Uptown Man's Acquitted By Judge

An Uptown man who was accused of kicking his elderly dog and throwing it down a set of stairs this summer has been found not guilty in a bench trial overseen by Cook County Judge Anthony Calabrese.

Mazur | Chicago Police Dept
The victory for the owner comes two months after the case was thrown out because the state’s attorney failed to show up for a court appearance, records show. Calabrese reinstated charges after the prosecutor claimed to have entered the wrong date on their calendar.

In late July, a Chicago police animal crimes team went to Anthony Mazur Jr’s home in the 800 block of West Sunnyside to investigate a complaint. A neighbor gave the cops video and told officers that he saw Mazur kick his aging Dalmatian—Shar Pei mix in an alley until the dog relieved himself, police said.

The witness told police that Mazur then threw the animal, named “Jake,” down several stairs near his back door.

Arresting officers said in their report that Mazur “admitted to kicking his elderly dog because the dog couldn’t do the things it used to do such as walk and move.”

When an investigator asked Mazur why he would kick his elderly, dying dog, Mazur stated that he was recovering from a medical condition and was "sad to lose the dog….There’s no excuse,” police said.

But on September 19, Calabrese threw the case out because prosecutors failed to show up in court, records show. Four days later, the state filed a motion asking Calabrese to reinstate the case because they entered the wrong date in their schedule. Calabrese agreed.

On Wednesday, Mazur waived his right to a jury trial and put his fate in the hands of the judge. Calabrese found him not guilty on both charges: cruelty to animals and violation of animal ownership duties.

Jake was taken from Mazur's care and was subsequently put to sleep due to poor health conditions, according to a person familiar with the case. Mazur’s other dog, Oakley, was returned to his care in October, according to court records.

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Accused Serial Rapist Met Two Victims At Boystown Nightclub, Prosecutors Say

Gabriel Dathey (inset) is accused of raping four women, including two that he met at Berlin Nightclub. | Berlin
A Lakeview man charged this week with four criminal sexual assaults since 2002 met two of his victims at Berlin, a long-running Boystown-area nightclub, according to police records secured by CWBChicago.

Newly-received DNA test from years-old rape kits led to the arrest of 34-year-old Gabriel Dathey Monday morning at his home in the 2900 block of North Pine Grove, according to court records.

Dathey told arresting officers that he worked as a cab driver.

On February 24, 2012, a 22-year-old Roscoe Village woman encountered Dathey at Berlin, 954 West Belmont. She accepted a couple of drinks from Dathey and remembered receiving a ride home from him. She told police that she remembered little about what transpired next except waking up in her bedroom with Dathey on top of her. “She told him to stop and said she was sick and vomiting,” police said. “She felt she had been drugged.”

Dathey enjoys a drink in February 2017. | Facebook
About a week later, on March 4, Dathey met a Finnish au pair at the now-defunct Visions Nightclub at 632 North Dearborn, according to police records. The woman reported feeling disoriented but remembered being in a house with three men and having sex with one of them. “She reported she started crying and said ’no’ when he entered the room wanting to have sex,” according to police records.

Cops caught up with Dathey within days of the attack and secured a DNA sample from him. Prosecutors did not say why it took nearly six years for the test results to come back.

The now-defunct Vision and Castle nightclubs operated in this River North landmark. | Google
Another woman allegedly met Dathey outside of Berlin on August 10, 2014. The victim, who was 30 at the time, admitted to being very intoxicated and said she accepted a ride home from Dathey. She told police that she was disoriented but believes Dathey sexually assaulted her in his car behind her home in the 2100 block of West Cortland.

The oldest attack to result in charges against Dathey this week took place on the Loyola University campus early on September 29, 2002. An 18-year-old woman was walking on school grounds when Dathey approached her and asked her to go with him, police said at the time. He then pulled her to the ground, pulled her jeans and underwear down, and proceeded to assault the woman, police said. Prosecutors this week said Dathey was unable to have sex with the woman, but his DNA was found in a discarded condom.

Dathey is charged with three counts of Class X felony aggravated criminal sexual assault and one count of felony criminal sexual assault by force.

Cook County Judge David Navarro ordered Dathey held without bond.

Bizarre Coincidence

In an unusually strange coincidence, Dathey’s home is just two blocks from where another accused serial rapist lives. And, prosecutors say both men picked up victims at the same River North nightclub complex.

Robert Walters, 44, resides in the 600 block of West Diversey, just around the corner from Dathey’s home.

Walters is charged with sexually assaulting three women over the course of several years. Police say he met one of his alleged victims outside of the now-shuttered Castle Nightclub, which operated in tandem with Vision, where Dathey allegedly trolled for a victim.

Walters allegedly met his other two victims in bars—one of them after arranging a date via OK Cupid.

Walters is free on electronic monitoring while he awaits trial. A judge this month gave him permission to move to the suburbs to live with his mother and look for work.
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ANOTHER Carjacking — Uber Driver Targeted In North Center Wednesday Evening

Another day, another carjacking.

Two masked offenders approached an Uber driver, implied they had a handgun and forced him out of his car in North Center yesterday evening.

The victim said it all played out near the intersection of Irving Park Road and Maplewood around 9:30 p.m.

Taken was a white 2015 Honda Civic with a license plate that begins with Z683, police said.

The offenders tossed the victim’s phone out of the car in the 4300 block of North Spaulding, about a mile west of the crime scene.

Police said the suspects are two black men between 19- and 25-years-old. One is 5’8” tall, 190 pounds, and he wore a puffy black jacket with dark jeans. The other is also about 5’8” tall, slimmer, and he wore a white and red hoodie with black jeans. Both men covered the lower half of their faces with masks or scarfs.

Last night’s carjacking is the third in the North Center-Roscoe Village area since Tuesday night. Read more about the earlier incidents HERE.

Neither car taken on Tuesday been recovered as of late last night, police said.
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Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Gun Threat, Gay Slurs Bring Lawsuit For Lyft Driver

Jaleesa Rance (inset) is now facing a civil suit in addition to criminal charges. | Lyft; CPD
As if criminal charges weren’t bad enough, things just got worse for an Aurora-based Lyft driver who allegedly pulled a gun on two passengers near Boystown on September 1.

Jaleesa Rance, 25, pulled the handgun on two riders during an argument in the 400 block of West Melrose around 2 a.m., according to a police report.

A passenger took this photo of Rance pointing a gun, Calvin's attorney said. | Legal Rideshare
One of the men took a picture of Rance before she fled the scene. Police took her into custody moments later near Addison and Broadway.

Rance was charged with two misdemeanor counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon and one misdemeanor count of unlawful use of a weapon on a public street. A handgun was recovered from her vehicle, according to police.

Now, one of the passengers is suing her an amount exceeding $50,000.

The suit by 31-year-old Charlie Calvin of Edgewater accuses Rance of picking the men up at Sidetrack nightclub in Boystown only to kick the men out a few blocks later while brandishing a handgun.

Calvin said an argument broke out just three blocks from the bar after he told her that she made a wrong turn.  Rance pulled a gun from the center console and told the two men to “get out of my fucking car!…I’ll blast you faggots!”

Calvin alleges that Rance followed the couple out of the car and lodged a volley of anti-gay slurs in their direction. A police report identifies the other passenger as a 26-year-old man from southwest suburban Lemont.

Police said they recovered a fully-loaded handgun and a loaded 9-round magazine from Rance’s center console.

She is due back in criminal court on Tuesday.
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With Nearly 250-Years Of Prison Sentences Under Their Belts, Four North Side Burglars Go Back To Prison

Several North Side burglary cases have wrapped up recently, with defendants receiving sentences that range from probation to 14-years in prison.

Combined, the four have been sentenced nearly 250-years in prison since 1979.

Samuel Maldonado, 55, a career burglar who was caught red-handed walking down a Lakeview street with a stolen TV in August, received a six-year prison sentence.

Maldonado was arrested after a woman reported seeing someone break into her neighbor’s garden apartment in the 1400 block of West Hutchinson. Maldonado was stopped five minutes later with a TV set on the corner of Clark and Berteau, according to authorities.

Before his current trip to prison, Maldonado had been sentenced to prison eight times:
• 10 years for burglary in 2009
• 6 years for burglary in 2006
• 8 years for burglary in 2002
• 6 years for burglary in 1999
• 6 years for burglary in 1996
• 4 years for narcotics in 1987
• 4 years for burglary in 1987
• 4 years for attempted burglary in 1987

Tevin Tucker—accused of trying to break into an ATM near Wrigley Field and then battering the cops who tried to arrest him—received a sweet deal in exchange for his guilty plea. Judge Leroy Martin sentenced him to three years for one count of aggravated battery to a police officer and then dropped eleven other counts that Tucker was facing.

Cops said they saw Tucker prying open the ATM at 948 West Addison around 8:30 p.m. on October 10, 2017.

Tucker fled the scene, but officers caught up with him in the alley behind the 3600 block of North Wilton.

As police walked Tucker to their vehicle, the 31-year-old became combative, spit in a lieutenant’s face, and kicked another officer in the leg, according to prosecutors. They said Tucker later battered a jail attendant at the Area North police lock-up.

Career criminal Melvin Smith, 57, received two concurrent 4-year terms for burglarizing a Lincoln Park gas station—twice.

A witness reported seeing Smith break into the gas station at 2670 North Lincoln around 12:30 a.m. on March 14. Arriving officers found a smashed window, a brick, blood on some shelving and “multiple empty cigarette shelves,” according to their report.

Cops stopped Smith nearby because he matched the witness’ description of the offender. Smith was holding a backpack, and his hand was bleeding, officers said.

The bag contained 68 packs of smokes, including Marlboros, Pall Malls, Capri Violets, and L&M Menthols, police said.

A judge set Smith’s bail at $75,000.

The May 14 break-in was the second time that Lincoln Park Gas had been burglarized in three weeks. A smash 'n' grab burglar took smokes from them on April 28, too.

Smith’s previous prison sentences include:
• 8 years for burglary in 2008
• 18 months for narcotics in 2007
• 1 year for narcotics in 2005
• 7 years for burglary in 1996
• 7 years for burglary in 1993
• 3-1/2 years for narcotics in 1991
• 3 years for manufacture-delivery of narcotics in 1989
• 9 years for aggravated battery in 1984
• Another 9 years for deviate criminal sexual assault in 1984
• Another 9 years for rape in 1984
• Another 6 years for burglary in 1984
• 2 years for theft in 1980
• 3 years for attempted rape in 1979

46-year-old Earl Hampton received three concurrent 14-year sentences for a trio of break-ins.

A fugitive task force that went to Hampton’s home after he was identified as a suspect in an Uptown burglary last year found him hiding under bags of clothing in a closet.

In addition to the burglary in the 4100 block of North Kenmore, Hampton was convicted of burglarizing two apartments in the 5700 block of North Winthrop.

His previous prison sentences include:
• 10 years for residential burglary in 2009
• 6 years for narcotics in Jefferson County in 2011
• Another 10 years for residential burglary in 2009.
• Yet another 10 years for residential burglary in 2009.
• 2 years for possession of burglary tools in 2006.
• 2 years for theft in 2006.
• 4 years for narcotics in 2002
• 30 months for attempt burglary in 2000.
• 6 years for burglary in 1996
• 1 year for narcotics in 1996.
• Another year for narcotics in 1996.
• 3 years for possession of a stolen vehicle in 1993.
• 8 years for burglary in 1992.

Another Day, Another Shoplifting Mob At Uncle Dan's

Uncle Dan’s Outfitters locations have had a heckuva problem in our area this holiday season.

On Black Friday, a shoplifting mob hit the sporting goods store’s Southport location. The shop lost four Canadian Goose coats worth $500 to $1,700 each in the raid.

Now, Uncle Dan’s location in Lincoln Square has been targeted twice in two days.

Around 4:30 this afternoon, a group of four teenagers entered the store, and each took a Canadian Goose coat valued at $1,000 each. The crew battered a store worker who tried to intervene. They fled in a four-door Chevy that is registered to an address in the Grand Crossing neighborhood.

Yesterday, two people entered the store around 2:30 p.m. and started trying on coats, police said. The offenders then cut a cord that connected the jackets to a wall and fled the scene in a dark-colored SUV. The suspects were described as a 25- to 29-year-old black man who stands about 5’10” tall and weighs about 170 pounds with a black female, 25- to 29-years-old 5’5” tall and 125 pounds.

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Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Wild Images Of Roscoe Village Nail Salon Robbery Released; Cops Need Help IDing Gunmen

Detectives released a community alert and jarring surveillance images of a Roscoe Village nail salon robbery late last night.

We reported on the crime just three hours after it unfolded at the 2X10 Nail Salon, 2112 West Roscoe around 11:40 a.m. on December 1.

Two gunmen seen here rounded up four cellphones and took money from the register before running away, police said.

In addition to the 2X10 heist seen above, police say these offenders held up another salon Monday afternoon in the 4100 block of West Peterson. Images from that robbery are seen below. Police said that the duo is wanted for “multiple” nail salon robberies.

Police said the offenders are two black men between 16- and 18-years-old. They stand 5’4” to 5’8” tall and weigh 130 to 160 pounds. The robbers typically wear dark hoodies with blue jeans or sweatpants that may have the number “85” on the thigh or hip.

Anyone with information about these suspects is asked to call Area North investigators at (312) 744-8263.

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Two Carjackings, One Armed Robbery Near Roscoe Village Monday; Video Captures Stolen Cars Escaping In Alley

UPDATE 7:30 AM DECEMBER 12: Police say 20-year-old Kemar Matthews-Hill of South Chicago and an unnamed 17-year-old female juvenile have each been charged with one felony count of armed robbery with a handgun in connection with the incident on Grace.

UPDATE 3:40PM DECEMBER 14: Judge Michael Clancy set bail at $50,000.

Matthews-Hill | Chicago Police Dept
There have been no arrests and no charges filed in connection with the two earlier carjackings. Our original report from earlier this morning continues below.
New developments overnight following two carjackings in the Roscoe Village area yesterday evening:
CWBChicago has been provided with surveillance footage that appears to show the two carjacked vehicles following a third car moments after the two robberies went down.
• A man and a woman are in custody after a third victim was robbed just north of Roscoe Village shortly before 10 p.m. Monday. The offenders were in the process of stealing the victim's parked car when police arrivied on-scene.
Video shows an unknown car (top), a Dodge Dart, and a Porsche Cayenne.
Here’s what we've learned:

A 37-year-old man was walking in the 2000 block of West Grace at 9:55 p.m. Monday when a man and a woman approached him, pulled out a handgun and announced a robbery. The male offender held the man at gunpoint while the woman took the victim's car keys, wallet, and phone. After demanding to know where the victim’s car was parked, the pair fled on foot.

Responding officers quickly learned that the suspects had been directed to the victim’s car, which had been parked near Roscoe and Claremont. Cops swarmed that area and spotted the robbery suspects as they neared the victim’s car. The duo fled on foot, but both were quickly taken into custody. A gun was recovered along with the victim’s property in the 3400 block of North Claremont. Charges are pending this morning.

Investigators are working to learn if the detained suspects have connections to a pair of armed carjackings that took place in the Roscoe Village area earlier Monday evening.

Just after 8 p.m., a 47-year-old woman was sitting in her Porsche Cayenne in the 3200 block of North Hoyne. An unknown offender wearing a ski mask tapped on the window of the car and displayed a handgun while demanding control of the vehicle. He was last seen heading southbound in the east alley of Hoyne, according to a police source. The offender ditched the victim’s phone near Hamlin Park to prevent GPS tracking, police said.

The car is a 2011 model bearing a license plate that begins with K911.

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Less than five minutes later, a 25-year-old man walked into a wine store in the 2200 block of West Roscoe asking for help after he was carjacked in the 3300 block of North Bell. Once again, the victim said he was sitting inside his car when two men opened the doors on both sides of the car and ordered him out at gunpoint.

The robbers covered their faces with scarfs and both brandished handguns as they took the victim’s red 2014 Dodge Dart and fled south. The car has a gold racing stripe on the side; gold and black rims; and a license plate that begins with AJ693, according to sources.

Police said the known carjacking offenders are all men in their early 20's, black, wearing ski masks or scarfs over their faces.

The gunman on Hoyne is about 5’10” tall, has twists in his hair, and was wearing a red and white letterman-style jacket. He had a blue steel handgun. His ski mask has detailing around the eyes and mouth.

On Bell, the suspects are about 5’9” tall and both wore gray or black hoodies with writing on the front.

Early this morning, a CWBChicago reader provided surveillance video that shows an unknown car being followed by a red Dodge Dart and a Porsche Cayenne through a Roscoe Village alley moments after the carjackings.

The video, posted above, has been provided to investigators.
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Monday, December 11, 2017

Breaking: Two Carjackings Near Roscoe Village Tonight

UPDATE 12:53AM DECEMBER 12: Go HERE for a full update including video of the stolen cars leaving the area and info on a third robbery nearby. Our original story follows.
Cops are on the hunt after two carjackings were reported just minutes apart near Roscoe Village on Monday evening. Investigators believe the same crew is responsible for both robberies.

At 8:05 p.m., a masked gunman approached a woman and took her 2011 Porsche Cayenne in the 3200 block of North Hoyne, police said. The car, which bears a license plate beginning with K911, was last seen heading southbound in the east alley of Hoyne.  Police believe the robbers ditched the victim’s phone near Hamlin Park to prevent GPS tracking.

Approximate locations of tonight's two carjackings. | BatchGeo
Less than five minutes later, a man walked into a wine store in the 2200 block of West Roscoe asking for help after he was carjacked in the 3300 block of North Bell. Once again, the offenders had covered their faces and both brandished handguns as they took the victim’s red 2014 Dodge Dart and fled south.

The second victim’s car has a gold racing stripe on the side; gold and black rims; and it bears a license plate that begins with AJ693.

Police said the offenders are men in their early 20's, black, wearing ski masks or scarfs over their faces. One ski mask has detailing around the eyes and mouth.

One offender is about 5’10” tall, has twists in his hair, and was wearing a red and white letterman-style jacket. He had a blue steel handgun.

Another is about 5’9” tall and wore a gray hoodie or black hoodie with writing on the front.

There is likely to be at least one additional offender, a police source said.

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4 Years For Beating, Robbing Gay Man In Hate Crime Attack

Phillip Brown beat and robbed a gay man just hours before the 2015 Pride Parade kicked off across town.
A Garfield Park man has been sentenced to 4-years in prison for attacking and robbing a man in an anti-gay hate crime in Lincoln Park more than two years ago.

Just before 4 a.m. on June 28, 2015, Phillip Brown mumbled gay slurs as he approached an Uptown man who was hailing a cab in the 2300 block of North Ashland, police said. Brown then unleashed a series of punches to the man’s face while telling the victim to “get your gay ass out of here.” He then took the man’s iPhone and jumped over a fence, according to court records.

Police were able to identify Brown through an investigation that led to his arrest when he showed up for an unrelated court date in Skokie more than a year later.

Brown, 21, agreed to plead guilty to robbery and hate crime charges. In exchange, the state dropped a felony aggravated battery count. Cook County Judge Alfredo Maldonado sentenced Brown to four-years for the robbery to be served concurrently with three-years for the hate crime charge.

Brown is scheduled to be paroled on July 12, 2019.

Eight hours after the hate crime, Chicago’s 2015 Gay Pride Parade kicked off. Prosecutors did not draw any connection between the events.

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Blotter: Robbery Near Belmont Red Line; LVHS Student Reports "Inapproriate Touching"

A handful of recent reports from around our area:

• Police are investigating a criminal sexual abuse case reported at Lakeview High School on Friday.

Chicago police said Friday that an 18-year-old female student reported being touched inappropriately by a 17-year-old male student around 1:30 p.m.

CPD’s Office of News Affairs this afternoon said that there were no further developments to report in the case. Lakeview Principal Paul Karafiol has not responded to a request for comment sent late this afternoon.

As a side note to the case, the victim’s father called 911 to complain that his daughter had been waiting more than 20 minutes for police to arrive at the school. The 19th (Town Hall) District had a backlog of calls awaiting police service that afternoon due to understaffing.

CWBChicago will update this story when we receive more information.

• A man told police that he was robbed near the Belmont Red Line station early Saturday by two offenders who implied they had a weapon. The victim said the offenders took his cash and cell phone near Belmont and Wilton, then fled eastbound on Belmont around 2:45 a.m.

The robbers were described as two black men—one wearing a tan sweater and the other wearing a black jacket with blue sweatpants.

• While residents who attend local CAPS meetings are enduring lectures about how many burglaries are the result of unlocked doors, a North Center burglar expended a great deal of effort (and blood) during a forcible break-in last week.

Around 1 p.m. on Thursday, a resident in the 1800 block of West Byron called police after finding their home broken into. A burglar had smashed through a rear window. When an officer radioed for an evidence technician to handle the crime scene, the cop reported “blood everywhere in the house. There’s blood at the rear pantry window. Blood on the basement floor. Blood on the main floor on a filing cabinet. Blood in the bedroom. Also blood on the rear basement door.”

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North Center Man On Probation For Burglary Is Charged With...BURGLARY Again

He received probation for burglary in May, now he’s walking free after posting bail for another burglary in November. Let’s give a warm welcome to the pride of North Center—Nathan Wettig!

Wettig | CPD
An officer who watched video of a burglary that took place in the 2400 block of West Addison last month recognized Wettig from a previous arrest. Cops went to Wettig’s home on November 28 and took him in for questioning.

Police say Wettig admitted that he’s the guy seen on video taking a bike from the garage on Addison a week earlier. He’s been charged with burglary.

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It’s a familiar routine for Wettig. He was previously arrested at his home in May after detectives determined that he had burlgarized a man’s house in the 2000 block of West Byron days earlier, according to court records.

Police say Wettig admitted to stealing a MacBook from the home because “his friend Taylor was going to wipe it clean…so he could have it for his personal use.”

Wettig pleaded guilty to the May burglary a month later and received one-year probation from Judge Marvin Luckman.

You’d think that being arrested for burglary five months after getting probation for burglary might be grounds to revoke Wettig's probation…but, no. This is Cook County. When Wettig returned to Luckman's courtroom for his latest bail hearing, the judge set bail at just $10,000.


Mendoza | Cook County Sheriff
A Rogers Park man smashed an Uptown homeowner’s sliding glass door with a propane tank, entered the residence, and then punched the 45-year-old victim in the face after encountering him in the living room, police said. It played out in the 4600 block of North Greenview.

Cops caught up with 21-year-old Vladimir Mendoza a couple of blocks away shortly after the 2:30 a.m. break-in on November 29.

Mendoza is charged with Class X felony home invasion and was ordered held without bail by Cook County Judge David Navarro.
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Sunday, December 10, 2017

A Christmas Miracle: TBOX Bar Crawl Records ZERO Arrests

A couple of festive "nesting dolls" take up residence on Clark Street. | Video grab from @the1stMikeC
Five years ago, a Wrigleyville Christmastime bar bacchanal called TBOX resulted in a drunken stabbing, multiple arrests, and a destroyed neighborhood.

Four years ago, our site was brand new and we began tracking TBOX activity and reporting on the organizer's efforts to be a little less of, frankly, an asshole to our neighborhood.

Since we began reporting on TBOX many changes have been introduced: They hired private security to contain their mess and private ambulances to haul off their intoxicated customers—jobs that used to fall into the hands of the local police district and firehouses. In 2013 and 2014, TBOX could single-handledly be thanked for depleting emergency personnel across the North Side.

For the first time, CWBChicago can report that a TBOX event resulted in no arrests this year. That's down sharply from eleven in 2013. There were seven arrests in 2014; six in 2015; and four last year.

Held Saturday, crowds appeared thinner than in recent years—possibly due to a reduced number of participating bars.

It sure is neat when for-profit entities take responsibility for their events rather than pushing it all off on the neighborhood to deal with.

Of course, we kept track of emergency radio traffic throughout the event. Reflecting the day's reigned-in antics, the list of interesting calls is much shorter than in previous years:

Ewww. Maybe they aren't nesting dolls after all. 
9a.m. — Nothing says Christmas like the annual arrival of the Chicago Police Department’s “Big Scary Bus” in Wrigleyville.

1:27 p.m. — Deuces wild! “I need a fire inspector and a (police) organized crime unit at Deuces!” 3505 N. Clark.

2p.m. — Early afternoon video...

2:01p.m. — The 19th District runs out of police officers to handle incoming calls for service. 911 calls will be stacked up to await officer availability. This condition—known as a “RAP”—will continue for the next 7 hours and 52 minutes.

2:35p.m. — The unhinging begins. Addison east of Clark: “Man down, cracked his head. Intoxicated.”

2:38p.m. — At 3225 North Southport ya got a “man, semi-conscious, trying to sit up, spitting up, mumbling.”

You know what they say. "Early bird gets the worm!" | Video grab from @the1stMikeC
4p.m. — Video of what you "missed."

4p.m. — A TBOX attendee vomits into the “Toys For Tots” donation bin at Nisei Lounge, defiling gifts intended for underprivileged youngsters. Nisei Lounge immediately launches a drive to replace the damaged items.

At TBOX, the early bird gets the ambulance.
4:15p.m.— Criminal damage in progress. 3167 Clark. The Uber driver refused to pick up four people who are too inebriated. They’re kicking his doors and harassing him.

4:32p.m.— Clark and Irving: “male white, 20-25, red Christmas sweater, drinking in the middle of the street.”

4:50p.m.— “Suspicious person. Male white, intoxicated, red shirt, checking car doors” at Clark and Addison.

5:06p.m.— Battery report at Barleycorn. A woman says the bouncer battered her. In the background, a woman is heard screeching, “That’s not how you handle a girl!”

5:40p.m.— 1151 West Eddy: “Unknown male, face down, pants down, lying on the ground.”

6p.m. — Video update from @the1stMikeC

Some holiday costumes are timeless, like this blazer-wearing cowgirl Sox fan. | Video grab from @the1stMikeC
6:19p.m.— A few steps away in Boystown: “Ride with EMS. Halsted and Bradley. Unknown male bleeding. He says he was kidnaped. Male white, Santa hat, and reindeer sweater.”

6:43p.m.— Officer at 3463 North Clark: “I think we got a lady who’s a little unresponsive right now.” Private ambulance dispatched.

7:23p.m.— Check the well-being at Addison and Wolcott: “Male white, 30’s, wearing a blue Christmas sweater, knocking on car windows in traffic.”

9:40p.m.— Fire Department assist in the 1200 block of Fletcher. “Caller says someone in a green sweater kicked him and chased him.”

10:34p.m.— So, regarding that call an hour ago on Fletcher: “Mario is now calling about his friend who went inside a house and did drugs with him on Fletcher.” His friend is missing and Mario is hiding in the bushes outside of 7-Eleven at Racine and Belmont.

10:39p.m.— Sergeant frees Mario from the bushes and reports “this is a possible OD. His friend was unable to be awakened and this guy was thrown out of the apartment by the man in the green suit.” Fire department requested for the Fletcher address.

10:55p.m.— Sergeant: “Disregard fire. He has popped back to life.”  Dispatcher: “Good to hear!”

Ain't no party / Like the big scary bus party / Cuz the big scary bus party don't stop! 

12:11a.m. Sunday — Dispatcher: “Is that TBOX crawl done with?” Sergeant: “I think it’s over, but the rest of the intoxicated people are still walking around.”

9:28 a.m. Sunday - Tweet from Nisei Lounge: “To be scrupulously fair, 85% of the #TBox2017 people we got were delightful. But yes, this was still our last year.”

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