Saturday, December 31, 2016

North Side Robbery Crew Strikes 4 Times In One Hour

Detectives are investigating a series of armed robberies of North Side pedestrians by a group of masked men on Wednesday evening. The attacks played out across Lakeview, Lincoln Park, Roscoe Village, North Center, and Avondale during a single hour. No one was seriously injured, and no arrests have been reported.

Around 7 p.m., a victim reported being robbed by five men near the 3000 block of North Talman in Avondale. The victim said one man had a gun, another had a knife, and all appeared to be Hispanic. They fled in a black four-door vehicle.

About 20 minutes later, two masked men tried to rob a victim in the 1800 block of West Roscoe in Roscoe Village. The man said both offenders jumped out of a car and each pointed a gun at him while demanding his wallet. He was unable to describe the men, and he said that their vehicle was “dark.”

Then, around 7:40 p.m., a victim reported that five men armed with guns robbed him in the 1500 block of West School in Lakeview. The offenders then climbed into a black four-door vehicle, possibly an Infinity, and fled eastbound on School.

Within minutes, a Lincoln Park woman called for help after three men jumped from a black four-door vehicle and robbed her in the 1000 block of West Altgeld. The offenders took her backpack and wallet before fleeing. According to the victim, one robber was white, another was Hispanic, and the third was black.

A fifth incident on Wednesday was also under investigation.

In that case, a woman told police that three men got out of a dark SUV and tried to rob her at knifepoint in the 1800 block of West Wellington.

The three then tried to follow her as she ran away.

She described the offenders as three white men, one of whom had a mask over his mouth.
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Convicted Boystown Robbery Offender Gets Arrested Again

A neighborhood pest is in custody, accused of punching a woman in the face and taking her friend’s cellphone near the Addison Red Line station on Tuesday.

Scurlock | Chicago Police Dept
39-year-old Kendricks Scurlock of the 800 block of West Grace is accused of attacking the victims around 5 p.m. and then running through an alley that runs parallel to the L tracks.

Cops found him standing on the corner of Wilton and Waveland with the victim’s iPhone moments later, police said.

He is charged with theft and battery. A judge set bail at $50,000.

Scurlock served time for a 2011 robbery in the 3300 block of North Halsted.

He has been arrested ten times since getting out of prison.
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Armed Robberies At Uptown, Lakeview Cellphone Stores

Detectives are investigating the armed robberies of two cellphone stores on Friday, one in Southeast Lakeview and the other in Uptown. No one is in custody.

A man in his early 30’s walked into the Metro PCS store at 2811 North Broadway around 5:25 p.m. and demanded merchandise while displaying the handle of a gun in his waistband, a witness said.

The offender is described as black, about 30-years-old, 6-feet tall, with a small mustache and chin beard. He was last seen heading southbound on Broadway wearing a blue track jacket with red and white arms; dark jeans; and a black knit cap.

Earlier, around 2:15 p.m. three men entered the Sprint store at 4436 North Broadway and threatened the staff with pepper spray while taking merchandise.

The offenders, who fled eastbound on Sunnyside from Broadway, are described as:
1) Male, black, 6-feet tall, wearing a beanie hat, gray hoodie and light-colored pants.
2) Male, black, 5’10” tall, wearing a beanie with a red logo and a heavy black coat
3) Male, black, 5’7” tall, wearing  a puffy coat and jeans.
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Wednesday, December 28, 2016

Man Charged With Battering Woman Whose Craft Store Tantrum Went Viral: "You're A Racist Bitch Ass Whore!"

UPDATE 8:25PM--A judge dropped the battery charge against Bajwa because Boyle failed to appear in court today. Our original story follows.
A 29-year-old Loop resident is charged with battering a Boystown woman who gained international infamy last month after viral videos showed her chewing out the staff at a local crafts store and a Halsted Street coffee shop.

Ramiz Bajwa is accused of entering Jennifer Boyle’s former apartment building in the 800 block of West Cornelia last Tuesday afternoon and pushing her while calling Boyle “a racist bitch ass whore,” according to court records.

He’s charged with simple battery.

Boyle no longer lives in the Boystown area, according to a source.

Last month, Bajwa was charged with manufacture-delivery of cannabis after cops said they found “duct taped Ziploc freezer bags” full of marijuana in his car during a traffic stop in the 700 block of West Belmont.
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PHOTO OF THE YEAR (GRAPHIC IMAGE): Strangers On An Uptown Street

It was 2 o’clock on a Tuesday afternoon. The day after Labor Day. 91-degrees as Chicago’s bloody summer began winding into what would be an equally bloody autumn.

Eight shots rang out in Uptown.

Pastor Jones ran from Uptown Baptist Church and stopped at the fallen man’s side. His right hand rose to the sky.

Another man, practically jumping from his own skin, kneels at the pastor’s feet.

Another man approached. He kneeled down and began administering CPR through the victim’s white tank top, freshly stained with five distinct red blotches that slowly grew.

A police sergeant arrived. A couple of bystanders recorded the moment with their phones. And one of those pictures quickly made its way to us.

We were immediately struck by the image. The nine complete strangers who were brought together by a  moment that, terrible as it was, played out nearly 800 times this year in Chicago.

Gregory Sims, 25, was Chicago's 522nd homicide of the year,  according to the authoritative research of

Like 81.6% of Chicago's murders, his killing remains unsolved.
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Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Charges Filed In Lakeview Party Bus Shooting

A 31-year-old Englewood man has been charged with shooting two passengers on a party bus near the Lakeview/Uptown border early Sunday morning.

Haynes | Chicago Police Dept
Victor Haynes got into an argument on the bus, and he then pulled out a gun and shot the men as the vehicle neared the 500 block of West Irving Park Road around 1:53 a.m., police said.

Haynes ran from the bus but was captured by police minutes later as he entered the lobby of a residential building at 3500 North Lake Shore Drive.

He is now charged with two felony counts of aggravated battery-discharge of a firearm and one felony count of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

A 38-year-old man who was shot in the head during the incident remains in critical condition at Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center.

The second victim, 33, is reportedly in good condition at Northwestern Memorial Hospital with a gunshot wound to the chest.

On Sunday, police mistakenly said that the 38-year-old was 22.

Haynes also suffered a self-inflicted gunshot wound to his left hand, police said.

Haynes, who has felony convictions for narcotics violations, will be in bond court on Tuesday.
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Sunday, December 18, 2016

3 Shot On Lakeview Party Bus; Suspects Flee Into Lakefront High Rise

Two West Side men are in critical condition after they were shot on a crowded party bus in Lakeview early Sunday.

A third man, who may be the shooter, also suffered a gunshot wound to his hand.

Police and ambulances rushed to the 500 block of West Irving Park Road after a man opened fire during a dispute on the bus, which was carrying 30 passengers, shortly before 2 a.m.

The gunman and another man ran out of the bus and fled down Recreation Drive on foot. They crossed under Lake Shore Drive in the Addison pedestrian tunnel and fled into a luxury condo high-rise building at 3500 North Lake Shore Drive.

Cops who were searching for the men saw them enter the condo building and took them into custody. One of the men was said to be covered in blood. A handgun was recovered.

The Victims And The Suspect

A 22-year-old man who suffered a gunshot wound to the head was transported to Illinois Masonic Medical Center. He was not expected to survive, according to a police source.

A 33-year-old man was shot in the chest and is at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in critical condition. He has been stabilized, police said.

The 31-year-old suspect is being treated for a minor wound to his hand at Masonic.

At least four passengers who were on the party bus have identified the gunman, according to police.

The second man who fled with the suspected gunman is also in custody.

We will update this story when charges are announced.

Party Police

In September, the Chicago City Council passed an ordinance to curb wild party bus rides after a series of shootings and high-profile incidents.

Under the ordinance, party bus passengers are “prohibited from engaging in disorderly conduct; possessing drug paraphernalia; discharging a weapon” and other activities.

Not surprisingly, the ordinance has been ineffectual.
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Friday, December 16, 2016

NEW: Lakeview Theft Crew Suspects Caught On Tape

Yesterday, we told you about a teen theft crew that has been distracting Lakeview retailers while other team members steal unattended cell phones and car keys. Police say at least nine shops were targeted on Saturday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.

Welp, today we woke up to find a friendly email from the good folks at Deltronics Pro Audio Repair, 2911 North Halsted.
“I’ve attached a photo that we were able to capture of the teens that you mentioned in your recent article. They stopped at our establishment on Tuesday night and tried every which way to distract us and get inside the shop. It was very uncomfortable, but fortunately, they left. I hope this helps.”
Victims and witnesses of the crew have described them as three to four black males between 15- and 20-years-old; 5’9” to 6-feet tall; 150- to 160 pounds. One wears tan boots. Another has a jean jacket with a tiger or similar emblem on the front. Most are said to be wearing acid wash or ripped jeans.

Many thanks to our good neighbors at Deltronics.
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Thursday, December 15, 2016

Teen Theft Crew Stealing Luxury Cars, Phones From Lakeview Retailers; 9 Victims Since Saturday

A group of young thieves has stolen cell phones and luxury cars from victims in retail shops across Lakeview over the past few days. And there are now indications that the crew has become more confrontational, bold, and possibly violent.

The team, typically working as a group of three or four, has entered salons, spas, and small retail shops along the Diversey, Clark, Belmont, Lincoln, and Broadway corridors. Once inside, some team members distract customers and employees while others pick up unattended valuables, including key fobs and phones.

The crew became physically confrontational in one incident, which escalated to robbery status, according to a police source.

Witnesses describe the offenders as black males between 15- and 20-years-old; 5’9” to 6-feet tall; 150- to 160 pounds. One wears tan boots. Another has a jean jacket with a tiger or similar emblem on the front. Most are said to be wearing acid wash or ripped jeans.

Here are recent incidents that are known to be connected to the crew according to police reports and CWB Chicago sources:

Saturday, December 10, 2:04 p.m.
Four teens asked to use the restroom and snatched customers’ phones at Gymboree, 3158 North Lincoln. The offenders then fled northbound.

Saturday, December 10, 2:05 p.m.
Four teens entered a salon in the 1400 block of West Belmont and asked to use the restroom. Employees chased the teens out when the group tried to access an unauthorized area.

Tuesday, December 13, early evening
Three offenders stole a key fob from an unidentified storefront in the 2900 block of North Clark and drove away with the victim’s white BMW.

Tuesday, December 13, 7:10 p.m.
Three teens pushed a woman and took two cell phones from an astrology shop in the 600 block of West Belmont. The case is classified as a robbery.

Tuesday, December 13, 7:20 p.m.
Three teens walked into Eclipse Salon at 1010 West Diversey and stole cell phones.

Tuesday, December 13, 7:48 p.m.
Three teens entered Firefly Salon at 1227 West Diversey, took an employee’s key fob, then drove off in the victim’s silver Audi Q5. Some of the offenders were seen leaving the area in a white BMW.

Wednesday, December 14, 4:48 p.m.
Officers on patrol saw three or four suspects matching the thieves’ descriptions parking the stolen white BMW in the 500 block of West Wellington. The offenders disappeared by the time cops circled back. Units flood the area in an attempt to capture the suspects.

One teen is eventually taken in for questioning, but the others escaped.

Wednesday, December 14, 5:18 p.m.
About a block from where the BMW is parked, a store clerk reports that four to six offenders entered his store and stole his cellphone at Smoque Vapours, 2900 N. Broadway.

Wednesday, December 14, 5:46 p.m.
Isabella Salon reports that a group of teens came into the store and tried to rob them, but the employees managed to push the offenders out and lock the door. 444 West Fullerton at Clark Street.
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Tuesday, December 13, 2016

Suburban Man Stabbed During "Apparent Robbery" In South Lakeview

A 21-year-old gang member from suburban Justice, Illinois, received multiple stab wounds during a possible robbery in South Lakeview overnight.

Surveillance image of a Chevy Cobalt connected to the attack
Around midnight, witnesses saw one or two carloads of men confront the victim and another man as the two victims parked a car near George Street Pub, 2858 North Halsted.

One offender appeared to have a gun and the older victim, 37, put his hands in the air, police said. A gold chain was ripped from his neck during the attack.

Other attackers yanked the 21-year-old out of the car, beat him, and stabbed him three times in the chest.

The younger man is in good condition at Illinois Masonic Medical Center, according to police.

Multiple witnesses reported that occupants of a silver 2007 Chevy Cobalt, seen here in a surveillance image, were involved in the attack.

A Toyota Prius and an unknown model of Chrysler also fled the scene.

Police sources were unable to explain why the two victims were targeted by up to three carloads of "suspected robbers."
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Monday, December 12, 2016

20 Years For Mugging Lakeview Senior On Easter Morning

One of 2016’s most blood-boiling crimes has wrapped up in court, ending with a lifelong criminal getting another 20 years in prison.

Larry Tolliver pleaded guilty to the Easter morning attack and robbery of a 75-year-old Lakeview woman as she shuffled off of an elevator in the lobby of Cedar Village, a complex that provides affordable housing for senior citizens in the 3600 block of N. Pine Grove.

Video of the attack showed Tolliver confronted the woman, then threw her onto the elevator floor and rummaged through the storage compartment of her walker before he fled.

Those surveillance images played a crucial role in Tolliver’s arrest.

Less than a week after the attack, a Boystown homeowner met with police because she believed that a man she recently hired to perform odd jobs resembled the robbery suspect. The tipster said the man identified himself as "Larry" when she hired him to do chores near Halsted and Grace days after the mugging.

Tolliver was arrested and charged.

Neighbors would soon learn that Tolliver had a long, violent criminal record and he was released on parole less than a month before he attacked the woman.

As CWB Chicago reported exclusively in April, Tolliver had been released early from prison fifteen times despite being sentenced to more than 91 years in prison for crimes ranging from burglary (eight times) to armed robbery (twice) to shoplifting.

Incredibly, he received nine years in prison for a 2006 break-in that took place on the same street as the Easter morning mugging. But he didn’t serve nine years in prison, of course. We're in Illinois. Instead, by the time those nine years were up, Tolliver would be convicted and returned to prison twice for other crimes.

According to court records, Tolliver—using a dozen aliases and various birthdates—has now been sentenced to a combined 111 years in prison since 1981.

The state has not yet announced Tolliver's next parole date.

Date of CaseName UsedChargeSentence
January 16, 1981UnknownTheft2 years
September 20, 1983UnknownBurglary5 years
February 8, 1984UnknownTheft2 years
February 29, 1984Larry BertrandTheft; receiving/possessing a stolen motor vehicle2 years
September 25, 1986Larry Tolliver BertrandBurglary8 years
January 20, 1991Carl BertrandAttempt Burglary4.5 years
December 31, 1992Larry CortezArmed Robbery8 years
July 21, 1996Antonio WalkerBurglary9 years
December 27, 2000Antonio TollmanArmed Robbery8 years
December 27, 2000UnknownBurglary7 years
December 27, 2000Antonio TollmanBurglary7 years
December 27, 2000Antonio TollmanBurglary7 years
June 10, 2004George J. WilliamsTheft25 days
August 14, 2004Greg HiltRetail theft3 years
April 20, 2006Lawrence LockwoodRetail theft18 months
September 4, 2006Larry C. TolliverBurglary9 years
May 27, 2011Marcus WellsBurglary6 years
August 7, 2014Paul JamesRetail theft2 years
April 5, 2016Darren BerlinRobbery Victim 60+20 years
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Sunday, December 11, 2016

HO-OH-NO! Four Arrests At Wrigleyville Christmas Bar Crawl

Gravity mishap caught on tape | Screengrab via @the1stMikeC
After years of withering criticism from neighbors and increasing scrutiny by the city, Wrigleyville’s annual Twelve Bars of Christmas shitshow was significantly less shitty, yet still a good show this year.

CWB Chicago estimates that “only” four TBOX participants wound up in jail this year. That’s down from six last year; seven in 2014; and eleven in 2013.

TBOX organizers began adding more private security, clean-up crews, private ambulances and portable toilets in 2013 after the bar crawl started sucking up police and fire department resources that were supposed to be protecting a broad swath of the city.

Chicago police tactical units from five outside districts patrolled Wrigleyville during Saturday’s event.

The king of Wrigleyville drunk fests, St. Patrick’s Saturday, is also seeing somewhat less shit with a little more show.

The March mess saw 21 arrests in 2014; 17 in 2015; and only seven this year.

Even with fewer arrests at TBOX 2016, the local police and fire department communications managed to remain entertaining. Here are some highlights:

Rock & Roll Elf or bizarre Jewish street gang? You decide. | Screengrab via @the1stMikeC 
10:45AM — Witnesses report a “21- to 25-year-old woman vomiting as she’s walking out of Old Crow Smokehouse.” She’s taken to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center and appeared to also be the victim of a battery, police said.

1:22AM — Moe’s Cantina needs an ambulance for a “downer.” The call is forwarded to TBOX’s private ambulance service.

2:46PM — “Male white in a black jacket is being beaten by a female white in a Christmas sweater.” Addison and Lakewood.

2:51PM — The fire department can’t find a reported female down at Clark and Sheffield. 19th district commander Marc Buslik reminds dispatchers that “the organizers of this caper have private ambulances so there may have been a transport.”

2:51PM — Confirmed. The drunk girl from Clark and Sheffield was swept away to hospital by the angels of Superior Ambulance Service.

3:38PM — Outside the Coffee and Tea Exchange, “a male white and a female white in matching red holiday sweaters” are beating each other up.

4:25PM — At Clark and Addison:
On the first arrest of TBOX
The drunkards gave to me
Two men in jail for 
5:02PM — “A severely intoxicated male, white screaming for help on the street” at Southport and Waveland.

5:28PM — The man who was screaming for help has now crashed onto a store’s Christmas display, and he’s refusing to get up. He’s described as “the man with trees on his sweater who’s sitting on a Christmas display.” 3600 block of Southport.

5:45PM —
On the third arrest of TBOX
The Irish Oak gave to me....
Another douche charged with batteryyyyyy
5:46PM — Man walks into the 19th district police station at 850 W. Addison and reports that a “highly intoxicated female got into his vehicle and passed out. He doesn’t know the woman.” She’s hospitalized.

7:41PM —
On the fourth arrest of TBOX
Moe’s Cantina gave to me…
A combative man slamming his own head into the concrete floor while fighting others.
(Sorry about that. Some of these TBOX scenarios require extra syllables.)

2035PM — An intoxicated man calls police because Nisei Lounge's doorman is "being mean" and won't let him into the bar. The man promptly passes out on the sidewalk. Ambulance scoops him up for a sleigh ride to detox.

9:55PM — Intoxicated male white is battering pedestrians as they pass by Clark and Roscoe. He’s wearing “a blue stocking cap, blue sweater, red snow pants, and no shoes.”

12:26AM — “Send me an ambulance. I gotta a drunk who slipped on the ice and cracked his skull” outside Slugger’s World Famous Sports Bar.

12:50AM — In the 1400 block of West Cornelia, an unknown male white is sleeping in the first-floor stairwell. The caller does not remember what the man is wearing, but he has antlers.

You can support CWB's newsgathering efforts with a donation to our Tip Jar.
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Sunday, December 04, 2016

Man Gets 15 Years For Convenience Store Robbery, Was Suspected In 8 Other Hold-Ups

A man who may have been involved in the armed robberies of nine convenience stores last year has pleaded guilty to one hold-up in exchange for a stiff 15-year sentence.
Thomas (left) and Branch | Ill Dept of Corrections, Chicago Police Dept

Prosecutors said 25-year-old Mitchell Thomas and 24-year-old Jamie Branch were arrested after they robbed a West Town 7-Eleven store at 3 a.m. on March 27, 2015.

Cops said Thomas pistol-whipped an employee at the store and then fled from police who happened upon the scene while the robbery was underway.

Branch pleaded guilty earlier this year in exchange for a 7-year sentence.

Two other suspects who fled from Branch's vehicle when it crashed during a police pursuit were never found.

The couple was suspected of carrying out at least eight other armed robberies of convenience stores during a 2-week spree in 2015, including several in our neighborhood:

• 7-Eleven, Broadway & Waveland, at 3:45AM on Wednesday, March 11
• 7-Eleven, Clark & Southport, at 3:30AM on Friday, March 20
• 7-Eleven, Clark & Southport, at 8:17AM on Sunday, March 22 (2nd robbery at this store)
• 7-Eleven, 2710 Lincoln, at 2:15AM on Wednesday, March 25
• 7-Eleven, 1349 Fullerton, at 2:23AM on Wednesday, March 25
• Circle K/Shell, Diversey & Racine, 2:23AM on March 27
• 7-Eleven, 2600 Lincoln, 2:30AM on March 27
• 7-Eleven, Halsted & Grand, on Friday, March 20 (They would be arrested after robbing this store again on March 27, police said.)

Under Illinois' standard 50-percent reduction in sentencing, Mitchell will be paroled on September 16, 2022, and Branch will be let loose on August 8, 2018.
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Center On Halsted Security Guard Among 3 New Arrests At Court-Shy Service Agency

The Center on Halsted and Ukesone (Inset) | Wikipedia, Chicago Police Dept
Just when you thought the antics at the Center on Halsted (COH) couldn't get any crazier, they have. But, on the plus side, it looks like the sprawling social service agency will finally be sending one of its employees to court--but only because now he's the one accused of committing the crime!

The COH security guard, who's charged with battering an agency client, was just one of three arrests within a week inside the firm's headquarters at 3656 North Halsted.

Neighbors have long urged the Center to send representatives to court when the organization or its employees are the victims of crimes.

The Center has publicly insisted that they do go to court when they're the victims, but a 3-year review of court records recently found that the agency has no-showed in court 25 out of 26 times.

A Three-Pack Of Arrests

On November 25, a man was arrested at the Center on Halsted and charged with criminal trespassing, violation of bail bond, and two counts of resisting arrest.

Lee | Chicago Police Dept
A COH security guard told police that 21-year-old Tony Lee of South Chicago returned to the facility after being instructed to leave. Responding officers said they saw Lee walk into the building and tried to place him into custody for trespassing.

Lee resisted, and the officers had to utilize "emergency handcuffing techniques," they said.

While searching Lee, the officers found an I-Bond that he was issued on November 17 after being arrested for trespassing at the Whole Foods, which is attached to the Center, police said.

Casey | Chicago Police Dept
The next day, a 24-year-old woman who lists the Howard Brown Health Center as her home, was arrested at the Center on Halsted for punching a 22-year-old man in the face.

Police said Tashena Casey "freely admitted" to hitting the man.

Casey was charged last February with battering a different man at the Center on Halsted, causing "lacerations and bruising," but the victim did not show up in court, and the charge was dropped.

Then, there is the pièce de résistance.

At 4:20 p.m. last Monday, Center on Halsted security guard  Adimabua Ukesone was arrested after a COH client told police that Ukesone battered him in an elevator.

The victim, a 29-year-old convicted prostitute with 23 cases on his Cook County criminal record, said Ukesone slapped his arm when he tried to video record Ukesone on the COH elevator.

Police stated that they inventoried "video evidence" in the case.

Smooth Get-Aways

In addition to all of those arrests, the Center on Halsted was also the scene of at least two other violent incidents recently in which offenders managed to escape before they could be stopped, according to police records.

At 10:50 a.m. on November 27, a sizable fight broke out at the Center and at least one person was seen recording the battle on their phone. But, the main participants slipped away before police arrived and no charges have been filed.

Later that evening, around 7:40 p.m., a series of 911 callers reported seeing an armed security guard fighting with a man who tried to climb over a register at Whole Foods.

At least four people were believed to have been involved in the incident, including one who appeared to be armed with a handgun or pistol-like BB-gun, according to witnesses.

But, once again, the men escaped before being caught, and no charges have been filed.

It would seem that the Center's policy of utilizing "restorative justice"--primarily "talking through" crimes with offenders and victims rather than pursuing a criminal case--isn't working.

Maybe they should try something that is known to produce results. Maybe they should show up in court, so these people see that their behavior has consequences.

And maybe they should also come to this Wednesday's community policing meeting to let neighbors know why the Center lied to them about their court policy. That'd be cool.
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Saturday, December 03, 2016

Daisy Duke-Wearing SWAT Team Biter Gets Probation (And Other Recent Court Action)

Sydney Marovitz Golf Course and McCovins (inset) | Chicago Park District, Chicago Police Dept
Court cases for some crimes we've reported on CWB Chicago have wrapped up:

One participant in a bizarre incident that saw cops and SWAT team members chasing Daisy Duke-wearing crossdressers across the Sydney Marovitz Golf Course has reached a plea deal.

Cops chased the suspects after people reported that they were zapping victims with a Tazer during lakefront robbery attempts in June.

Officers described a wild foot chase in the middle of the golf course, which was packed with duffers: “He’s wearing a pink hat and spandex” one officer screamed into his radio as the pursuit roared through fifth hole's 515-yard fairway

Cops caught up with the fabulous fivesome in the middle of the fourth hole fairway where a SWAT team member was bitten by 19-year-old Eric McCovins who threatened to have AIDS, police said.

McCovins has now pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated battery to police officers. A judge sentenced him to two years' probation.

Theft and trespassing charges against most of the other arrestees were thrown out, according to court records.

Prison For Wrigleyville Coke Deal

Pelt | Chicago Police Dept
Daniel Pelt, a 57-year-old Conservative Vice Lord gang member who sold drugs to an undercover cop across from Wrigley Field this summer, has pleaded guilty to manufacture-delivery of cocaine. He received a two-year sentence.

Pelt has a long, violent criminal record that includes a 30-month sentence for battering a police officer; multiple 10-year sentences for theft and burglary; two six-year sentences for robberies, and multiple drug convictions.

All totaled, he's been sentenced to more than 60 years in prison since 1983, but Illinois keeps giving him more chances.

Burglary Boneheads

It'll be two years' probation for Aaron Kaser, the 31-year-old Lakeview man who has now pleaded guilty to stealing a laundry list of tools from a neighborhood garage in September.

Kaser | Chicago Police Dept
Cops on patrol in the 1200 block of West Newport noticed that Kaser was hauling around “a lot” of tools that Kaser said he subsequently said he had "found."

Pressed for more detail, Kaser took the cops to an open garage in the 3200 block of North Sheffield where Kaser said he “took the tools…before someone else did.”

According to cops, Kaser was hauling a ProLift Work stool, a DeWalt hand drill, a DeWalt grinder, two jack stands, a Tekton torque wrench, two boxes of drill bits, a socket wrench with a bag of attachments, three portable work lights, a 50 foot extension cord, a bag of wrenches, three screwdrivers, and a C-clamp at the time of his arrest.

- Gerald Harris received probation for breaking into a Lakeview man's garage and stealing a $950 bicycle. Harris, 30, pleaded guilty to burglary in the October case which occurred in the 1100 block of West Newport.
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FBI Investigating 2 North Side Bank Robberies

The FBI is investigating a pair of bank robberies this week in neighborhoods just to our west.

The Lincoln Avenue offender | FBI
On Thursday, the TCF Bank at 4250 North Lincoln was robbed of about $3,000 by a man who wore a disco-tastic Afro wig and sunglasses.

The man entered the North Center neighborhood bank around 3:40 p.m. and presented a note to a teller that demanded cash, the FBI said. He then fled in an unknown direction.

According to the FBI, the man is black, about 25-years-old, and he stands 5'10" to 6-feet tall. He wore the wig, a black hooded sweatshirt with red sleeves, dark jeans, large sunglasses, and gray shoes.

The Western Avenue offender | FBI
Then, at 9;03 a.m. on Friday, a different man robbed the U.S. Bank at 4725 North Western in Lincoln Square of $1,411.

The FBI said the robber is white, between 40- and 50-years-old, and he stands 5'6" to 5'9" tall. He wore a red knit hat, a dark scarf, a tan coat, dark pants, and gray tennis shoes.

Authorities are offering a reward for information that leads them to either man. The FBI Chicago office may be contacted at (312) 421-6700.
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New Commander Meet & Greet, CAPS Meeting On This Week's Agenda

Cmdr. Marc Buslik | Chicago Police Dept
Two calendar items for your consideration this week:

On Wednesday, the bi-monthly community policing (CAPS) meeting for Wrigleyville and Boystown will be held at the police station on Addison. Start time: 7 p.m. The formal boundaries for the meeting's topics are Belmont to Irving Park and Southport to Lake Michigan, but all residents are welcome to attend.

Neighbors are also invited to meet new 19th District Police Commander Marc Buslik during an open house reception Tuesday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. in the police station community room at 850 West Addison.

Buslik, a 32-year veteran of the department, brings a reputation for community engagement that will be a welcome change for neighbors who felt shut out by departed Commander Robert Cesario.

The 19th District protects the area from Fullerton to Lawrence and from the Chicago River to Lake Michigan.
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3 Charged After Women Robbed In Lakeview This Morning

Farley | Chicago Police Dept
UPDATE 10:23PM-Chicago police have now identified the third offender as Jwan Farley, 20, of the South Side's Avalon Park neighborhood.

Like the two previously identified men, Farley is charged with one felony count of robbery and two felony counts of aggravated robbery-indicating presence of a firearm.

Our original report from this morning follows.
Three suspects who robbed two women in Lakeview this morning are in custody and facing charges, police said.

Lloyd | Chicago Police Dept
20-year-old Joseph Lewis of Morgan Park and 19-year-old Donzell Lloyd of Calumet Heights robbed the women with a third person who has yet to be identified, according to a freshly-released media alert.

Police were assisted in their investigation by a photograph of the offenders’ license plate that was taken by a witness to one of the robberies, according to a source.

One woman told police that several men cornered her near the 1200 block of West Waveland around 2:50 a.m. and then began to chase after her. The woman said the men threatened to kill her if she did not stop running.

Lewis| Chicago Police Dept
At around the same time, another woman reported being robbed near Fremont and Grace.

The second victim’s friend snapped a photo of the getaway car and police were able to forward the license plate information to other officers who soon found it on Lake Shore Drive.

Police pulled the vehicle over just south of North Avenue around 3:10 a.m. and all three occupants were identified by the robbery victims. Cops found proceeds from the robberies inside the vehicle, police said.

Lewis and Lloyd are charged with one count of felony robbery and two counts of felony robbery-indicating presence of a firearm, police said.

They are due in bond court this afternoon.
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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Gunman Who Robbed Local Stores Also Struck In Edgewater

The gunman who robbed a Boystown Walgreens and a North Center Jewel-Osco within 20 minutes early Sunday is also responsible for robbing two drugs stores in Edgewater the day before, according to an alert issued today by Area North detectives.

Without naming specific businesses, the alert warns of a Hispanic male gunman between 25- and 45-years-old, and weighing 180- to 230 pounds who robbed two stores in the 6100 block of North Broadway on Saturday in addition to the Walgreens and Jewel in our area.

A law enforcement source identified the targeted Edgewater businesses as the CVS Pharmacy at 6150 North Broadway and the Walgreens at 6121 North Broadway. The hold-ups occurred at 4:19 a.m. and 7:40 p.m. respectively.

While the alert says the man wore a tan Carhartt-style jacket during the hold-ups, CWB Chicago learned independently that three of the four victims said he was wearing a blue and black jacket.

At least two victims said the man has a mustache.

During the hold-ups in our area, witnesses said the gunman fled in a white four-door vehicle, possibly a Maxima or Altima, that was driven by another person.

Anyone with information about the offender is asked to call Area North investigators at 312-744-8263.
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OVERRULED! Grand Jury Brings Charges Against Alleged Wrigleyville Cop Beater After Goofy Judge Threw Case Out

A Cook County grand jury has returned an 8-count true bill against a man who allegedly beat an off-duty Chicago police officer during an altercation outside of Wrigley Field this summer.

Wilson | Cook County Sheriff's Office
29-year-old Tremaine Wilson was charged with aggravated battery of a police officer and reckless conduct in the June 22 incident.

But criminal-friendly Cook County Judge Marvin Luckman threw out the case citing “no probable cause” two weeks later even though cops identified Wilson after reviewing footage from a nearby surveillance camera.

Flummoxed prosecutors took their case to the grand jury.

Wilson’s now facing six counts of aggravated battery to a police officer and two counts of aggravated battery in a public place.

The incident occurred beneath a 24-hour webcam that captured audio of the disturbance as the off-duty cop tried to quell a fight on the street. The camera's microphone also captured squeals of delight from bystanders after the cop was knocked out.

The 28-year-old off-duty officer suffered a concussion, facial injuries, and a cut to his head, according to a source. He joined the police department three years ago after leaving the Marine Corps as a sergeant, the source said.

A judge set Wilson’s bail at $10,000.
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Despite Complaints, Uber Let Him Drive - He’s Charged With Sexually Assaulting A Boystown Fare

Early one morning in July 2014, a 21-year-old South Loop man hailed an Uber to take him home from Boystown.

Minutes later, the Uber driver who took the ride request, Adnan Nafasat, would choke, grope, and try to sexually assault the young man on Roosevelt Road, according to prosecutors.

CWB Chicago has learned that at least two separate customers complained to Uber about Nafasat's sexually overt behavior on the job in the weeks before the alleged sexual assault.

Despite those complaints, Nafasat was allowed to continue to drive for the company.

Prosecutors last year charged Nafasat with aggravated kidnapping, attempt aggravated criminal sexual assault, aggravated criminal sexual abuse, aggravated battery, and unlawful restraint.

Nafasat’s reported behavior before the alleged sexual assault was not illegal, but “show[s] his intent and state of mind toward young male passengers…and [shows his] propensity to be sexually inappropriate and opportunistic with young male passengers,” prosecutors said in a recent court filing.


In February 2014, about 5 months before the alleged attack, Nafasat picked up a young male Uber customer in Boystown, just one block from where he would later pick up the sexual assault victim, prosecutors said.

Nafasat “inappropriately inquired…about sexual positions” in a way that prompted the passenger to ask Nafasat to let him out of the car before they reached their destination.

The passenger filed a complaint about Nafasat’s behavior with Uber via client feedback, prosecutors said.

Then, about three weeks before he would allegedly assault the 21-year-old, Nafasat picked up another young male Uber customer in Logan Square.

During the ride to Lincoln Park, Nafasat “inappropriately to what [the customer] liked sexually and what his sexual preference was,” prosecutors say.

Once again, the passenger filed a complaint through Uber's client feedback, the state said, but Nafasat continued to drive for the company.

Finally, around 1 a.m. on July 31, 2014, Nafasat picked up his alleged assault victim near Halsted and Cornelia in Boystown.

He convinced the young man to sit in his minivan’s front passenger seat, claiming that the back seats were dirty and broken, prosecutors say.

After turning off the Uber tracking app, Nafasat allegedly told the victim, “No one knows where you are” and then began assaulting the man as he drove on Roosevelt Road, according to the allegations.

“At times, when [Nafasat] had to stop his vehicle, he would grab the victim by the face and throat to prevent him from exiting…The offender also pulled down his own pants” and attempted to force the victim to perform a sex act, prosecutors said.

The victim was also choked and had Nafasat’s tongue and fingers forcibly shoved down his throat during the ride, according to the filing.

We asked Uber to comment on their complaint handling procedures and other aspects of this story. The company, citing a policy of not commenting on “pending litigation,” referred us to an Uber blog post about customer safety.

No Pakistan For You

Two months ago, Nafasat’s attorneys asked the court to return his passport “in a limited capacity” so he could travel to Canada and Pakistan on business for a new employer.

The judge denied his request.

Nafasat is due back in court on January 23, 2017.

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