Multiple witnesses called 911 at 2:30 this morning to report a man down after being severely beaten near the Taco Bell across from Wrigley Field, 1111 W. Addison. The attack may have happened near Smart Bar, 3730 N. Clark, but the fire department was asked to respond to the Addison address.
While fire responded promptly, police units were unavailable to handle the call for two hours.
After the Air Force veteran and current South Loop resident was downed by the beating, two other offenders were seen stripping him of his valuables.
Dispatchers tried to assign the call to police again at 2:57AM, nearly a half hour after the man was beaten, but the officer they tried to give it to was tied up processing an arrest in the station.
The victim was transported to Illinois Masonic Medical Center.
At 4:23AM, two hours after the attack and robbery, a police unit became available to handle the call. An officer contacted the victim at Illinois Masonic and filed his report. Originally classified as an aggravated battery with a dangerous weapon, the case was subsequently upgraded to robbery under case #HW421277.
This was only one of last night's robberies in Wrigleyville and Boystown. Other CWB reports today document at least three additional robberies from overnight, as well as a slashing/stabbing near the Belmont Red Line. The entire district was depleted of officers.
Update December 1, 2013A few items that CWB has learned in the weeks since this incident:
The "dangerous weapon" with which the victim was beaten was his attacker's orthopedic arm cast. The victim was said to have sustained "serious" injuries according to the police report. In the days and weeks following the attack, the police department downgraded the beating from "aggravated battery with a dangerous weapon" to simple battery.
The decision to downgrade from aggravated battery to simple battery is interesting, particularly since the 19th district asked the 1st district to send an officer to notify the victim's girlfriend of his injuries. Requesting such notification across districts would be highly unusual for a case in which injuries only reached "simple battery" level.
The police report also states that the victim's property was stolen by a second offender and the valuables were taken from the victim's back pocket while he was on the ground. The police department classified the removal of the man's valuables as a "theft" rather than a "robbery."
The battery offender is male, white, about 28 years old, 5'8" tall
The "theft" offender is male, black, about 32 years old, 6-feet tall.