Three more people were victimized in armed street robberies in Oak Park last week. In addition, a woman was knocked to the ground and battered during an attempted strong-arm robbery.
Oak Park Commander Clemet Harbour said his department is contacting surrounding police departments to determine whether they’ve had any similar crimes committed in their towns.
Around 4:20, the afternoon of July 16, a man walking home from the Green Line elevated station was robbed at gunpoint. A man exited a car in the alley behind the 300 block of South Lombard Avenue and demanded the commuter’s backpack. When the man refused, the robber pulled a blue steel, short-barreled handgun and stated, “Give it to me or I’ll shoot you.” The victim then handed over the bag, which contained a laptop computer, cellphone and recording device, valued in total at $2,550.
About 15 minutes later a man stepped out of a similar 4-door blue car, possibly a Chevy Caprice, on the 1000 block of South Maple Ave. approached an Oak Park man and said, “Give me your wallet.” When the victim refused, the man pulled a .38 caliber handgun from his waistband and, using profanity, demanded the wallet, which his victim turned over. The thief then patted the man down and took a Blackberry phone from him, then handed it back before fleeing.
“We think it might be the same guy,” said Harbour of the two robberies.
Shortly after 11 p.m., July 20, a man walking on the 300 block of North Lombard was approached by another man who asked him for a cigarette. When the man refused and kept walking, the other man then pulled a long barreled revolver, stuck it against the man’s neck and said, “You know what this is.” He took the man’s wallet and ran to a waiting dark SUV and drove off.
Harbour said it wasn’t as certain whether the men responsible for robbing two Oak Park couples at gunpoint July 12 and 14 were the same person or persons responsible for two of the robberies last week.
In an unarmed robbery attempt, July 18, a woman walking on the 900 block of South Austin Boulevard was tackled by a man who jumped out of a car. The thief repeatedly demanded the woman’s purse, but when a witness came to the women’s aid he ran back to the waiting car and drove off.