Carjackers didn’t have a preference between Lyft and Uber in Oak Park last week as drivers from both ridesharing apps were victims of armed vehicular hijackings. While the two incidents occurred on separate days, offenders seemingly had a preferred time for forcibly taking cars as each happened during the noon hour.
A Chicago Lyft driver was the first to pick up a fare harboring motives beyond transportation, on Aug. 13 at 12:40 p.m., in the 200 block of South Humphrey Avenue. The passenger pressed a silver handgun with a black frame against the back of the driver’s neck and ordered him out of his 2016 dark gray Honda Pilot. The hijacker fled in the vehicle, traveling northbound on Humphrey Avenue. The estimated loss was $27,000. Oak Park detectives recovered the Honda Pilot on Aug. 16 in the 4100 block of West Roosevelt Road in Chicago after the vehicle was involved in a hit-and-run accident. The investigation is ongoing.
The second incident occurred six days later on Aug. 19, when an Uber driver from Berwyn picked up a fare at 12:24 p.m. and was directed by the fare to stop in the 100 block of North Taylor Avenue. The passenger showed a handgun and demanded the driver exit the vehicle. The victim complied and the offender was last seen driving north on North Taylor Avenue in the 2018 Chevrolet Malibu, a loss estimated at $20,000. Chicago police recovered the vehicle in the 400 block of North Lawndale Avenue.
Police reports describe the offender in the first incident as a Black male wearing a dark mask and dark brown hoodie. The offender in the second incident was described in police reports as a Black male, 25 to 30 years old, 6 feet tall with a medium build. He was last seen wearing a black ski mask.
While walking home at 9:50 p.m., Aug. 20 in the 100 block of Washington Boulevard, an Oak Park resident was pushed to the ground from behind by an unknown teen and a second teenager with dreadlocks searched the victim’s pockets and took a car key fob and a black Louis Vuitton wallet, which contained $600, identification and credit cards. Both teens entered the victim’s car but were prevented from starting the vehicle as the victim opened its rear passenger side door. The two teens then fled on foot northbound on North Taylor Avenue. The estimated loss is $1,450.
Someone entered an apartment through an unlocked kitchen window and ransacked the kitchen, living room, bathroom and bedroom, then removed a black backpack, an electric razor, three PlayStation 4 video games, two gaming controllers, a computer mouse, headset and $5 in cash between 6 p.m., Aug. 11 and 5 p.m., Aug. 16 in the 100 block of North Humphrey Avenue.
Someone forced open the bedroom window of a residence and took two white iPhone X cellphones, assorted jewelry, a diamond ring, earrings, chains and a Rolex watch between 10 p.m., Aug. 20 and 2 p.m., Aug. 22 in the 1100 block of South Boulevard. The estimated loss is $61,200.
Motor vehicle theft
A white 2014 Subaru Outback was taken from the 900 block of South Austin Boulevard between 9:30 p.m., Aug. 18 and 12:15 a.m., Aug. 19. The estimated loss is $20,000.
Criminal damage to property
Someone shattered the front and rear windshields of a white 2014 Nissan Altima parked in the street in the 900 block of Wesley Avenue between 9 p.m., Aug. 20 and 6:26 a.m., Aug. 21. The estimated damage is $2,000.
Someone slashed all four tires of a gray Jeep Patriot, knocked off the passenger side mirror and scratched the paint on both sides of the vehicle between 7 a.m. and 3:32 p.m., Aug. 21 in the 1100 block of Garfield Street. The estimated damage is $1,200.
The rear windshield of a 2015 Porsche Macan was broken between 3:15 a.m. and 1:25 p.m., Aug. 14 in the 1100 block of Westgate Street. The estimated damage is $1,000.
These items, obtained from the Oak Park Police Department, came from reports, Aug. 14-23, and represent a portion of the incidents to which police responded. Anyone named in these reports has only been charged with a crime and cases have not yet been adjudicated. We report the race of a suspect only when a serious crime has been committed, the suspect is still at large, and police have provided us with a detailed physical description of the suspect as they seek the public’s help in making an arrest.
Compiled by Stacey Sheridan