Oak Park police have charged four Chicago resident – two male juveniles and two men – with vehicular hijacking for allegedly taking a car from an Oak Park resident at gunpoint on April 7 in the alley between the 700 blocks of North Grove and Kenilworth avenues.
Both Darryl G. Peters Jr., 19 of the 400 block of North Trumbull Avenue, and Anthony C. Johnson, 18, of the 3800 block of West 13th St., were charged with four counts of aggravated vehicular hijacking.
The two juveniles, 15 and 17, both of the 1400 block of South Hamlin Street, were each charged with two counts of aggravated vehicular hijacking and one count of attempted armed robbery, according to a police press release.
Police Sgt. Dave Jacobson said Oak Park police worked with Chicago police to track down the suspects.
Meanwhile, one of two victims of the crime has spoken publicly about getting carjacked. Wednesday Journal is withholding his and his wife's identity for their own safety.
The 71-year-old victim said he and his wife, 67, were finishing cleaning their car in the alley behind his home at around 4 p.m. on April 7, when he spotted four young men headed their way.
"We had just finished and [his wife] was putting our effects into the garage side door," the victim said in an email. "I was waiting for them to pass so I could pull over and back into the north bay of my garage.
"One tried to pull open my door, which I pulled closed and then he pulled out what looked like a Colt .45 and pointed it at my head and told me to 'get out.' I got out and he immediately slid into the driver's seat. The other three jumped into the car and it sped off."
The victim said in a telephone interview that one of the four also pointed a gun at his wife and said, "I'll get you."
He said they called 911 and a squad car picked them up for an interview at the police station, when a call came in reporting that four people had been apprehended in the Austin neighborhood of Chicago in a dead end alley in the 300 block of North Parkside Avenue. The carjackers were apprehended after fleeing the vehicle, according to police.
Both victims were taken to the scene where they reportedly positively identified the suspects as the offenders. The victim said the two weapons used in the carjacking were found in the vehicle, but police would not confirm that the weapons had been recovered.
The victim told Wednesday Journal that he's lived on the block 43 years and that he has never seen a serious crime like the one he experienced Thursday.
"This is a bit unnerving, but I feel more angry than violated and am pouring that anger into helping the police and writing this," he said in the email. "It could have had a worse outcome if I had resisted, but when there is a gun pointed at your head, you think sense."
Police Chief Rick Tanksley praised the victims for quickly reporting the crime.
"This couple did everything right," Tanksley said in the press release. "They didn't panic, they didn't resist and they immediately called 911. They also made it a point to retain details about their assailants that made it easy for them to make a positive identification. I think everyone can learn a lesson from how the victims handled themselves."
Peters and Johnson are being held at Cook County Jail with bonds set at $250,000. There were due in court on April 12 at the Maybrook courthouse in Maywood. The juveniles were transported to Cook County secure juvenile detention center, according to police.
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