Monday, April 18, 2016

HEARTLESS: Hours After Tragic Fire, Burglars Raid Lakeview Apartment Building

Seen in ABC7's Friday report on the fire, this woman's apartment was among four burglarized in the building over the weekend, a source said. (WLS-TV screen grab)
Hours after an early morning fire in the 3400 block of N. Janssen left four people hospitalized early Friday, displaced residents of the heavily-damaged apartment building were given a few brief minutes to go inside and collect critical belongings.

The next day, burglars forced their way into the boarded-up building and took virtually everything valuable that was left behind.

Three of the fire’s four victims remain in critical condition in Stroger Hospital’s burn unit. A fourth is recovering at Northwestern Memorial Hospital. Two of the victim saved themselves by jumping from windows on the third floor, where investigators believe the blaze began.

Officers were called back to the scene at 3431 N. Janssen around 10 o’clock Sunday morning after someone discovered that burglars had forced their way through the back of the second floor. Four of the building’s six units were soon found burglarized.

The unbelievably heartless, kick-‘em-when-they’re-down break-in was reported as our area continues to suffer through a six-month-long burglary surge.

Chicago police say break-ins during the first quarter of 2016 were up 126% in Lakeview and up 226% in the 44th ward, which includes the fire scene and most of Wrigleyville and Boystown.

Burglar Chased By Lakeview Dad

Meanwhile, a Lakeview man chased after two intruders who forced their way into his family’s home around 4:45AM Saturday.

“They used a crowbar to enter a rear glass door in front of an obvious alarm panel,” the man told us yesterday, “and the lights were on.”

The burglars managed to outpace the victim, who last saw one of the men near 1650 W. Irving Park Road. That suspect was described as black, about 6’3” tall, and wearing a black hoodie.

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