By Jean Lotus
A stolen cellphone app helped Oak Park police nab one of a group of 6-10 bike-riding robbers who committed a string of three robberies by surrounding and intimidating their victims Sunday night in Oak Park between 10:45 and 11 p.m.
Police arrested two juveniles and an adult in connection with the robberies and said they expect more arrests to follow.
Victims said 6-10 males of various ages on bikes surrounded them in the 1100 block of North Ridgeland Avenue, the 300 block of Thomas Street, and the 100 block of Lake Street. Assailants demanded cellphones and wallets.
Also, in what police think is a related incident, a cellphone was stolen from a table at a block party in the 700 block of North Taylor Avenue. Police said the phone was being used to play music at the party.
The bike-riding robbers implied they had weapons and threatened violence, victims told police, although no weapons were displayed.
The ring was cracked when Oak Park police caught a juvenile on a bike in the 100 block of Washington Boulevard. He was caught within minutes of the Thomas Street robbery because of a location app on one of the stolen phones. Chicago police arrested two other suspects for similar crimes and made the connection with the Oak Park robberies, police said.
"These types of crimes are among the disadvantages of sharing a border with amajor metropolitan area as criminals can simply hop on a bicycle, cross the border to commit crimes and then flee back into a dense, urban neighborhood," said Police Chief Rick Tanksley.
Tanksley praised cooperation with the Chicago Police Dept. for help in solving the crimes.
No injuries were reported. Tanksley said the victims kept calm, complied with their assailants' demands and quickly notified the police.
This story has ben updated to correct a quote from Police Chief Rick Tanksley.
Answer Book 2019
To view the full print edition of the Wednesday Journal 2019 Answer Book, please click here.
Sign-up to get the latest news updates for Oak Park and River Forest.
|Submit Letter To The Editor|
|Place a Classified Ad|