Chicago police are warning residents of the Grand, Central and Shakespeare police districts to be vigilant following a string of armed robberies committed by a man with a machete.
There have been at least five recent robberies committed by a man with a machete in the three police districts, which are to the northwest of downtown and include neighborhoods such as Logan Square, Hermosa, Belmont-Craigin, Albany Park, Avondale and Irving Park, according to a community alert issued by Chicago police Friday. Three similar attacks have taken place nearby since, police said Monday morning.
A man came up from behind to rob a 44-year-old woman in Avondale at 8:20 p.m. on Saturday, said Chicago police Officer Jessica Rocco in an email. Thirty minutes later, a man in a silver sedan almost hit a 28-year-old woman and her seven-month old baby with his car before following them into an alleyway and demanding property while waving a sharp object, Rocco wrote.
On Sunday evening, a man swung a machete at a 52-year-old man who was walking on the sidewalk in Irving Park, Rocco said. The victim fell to the ground and threw his wallet to distract the robber, who ran away and entered a gray vehicle, Rocco said. The victim was in good condition and refused medical attention after being treated by Chicago Fire Department responders at the scene, Rocco said.
Detectives have not yet confirmed if the three new incidents are connected with the five robberies that police described as a possible pattern on Friday, Rocco wrote.
Authorities wrote in Friday’s community alert that the man — who has been described as white or Hispanic, standing about 5 feet 4 inches to 5 feet 6 inches tall, weighing about 125 to 150 pounds with a light complexion and a “curly hairstyle” — walks up to his victims while carrying the large sword. He “then demands the victim’s personal belongings,” and after taking their things, flees in a waiting silver four-door sedan, according to police.
“In one of these incidents, the silver four-door sedan appears to be driven by a second unknown (person),” according to the police alert.
The eight robberies have been reported in:
Police advised residents in the area: “Do not resist.” They also said to warn neighbors about the recent attacks, be aware of their surroundings and pay “special attention to any suspicious” people “loitering in the area.” If residents have surveillance cameras they should ensure they’re working properly.
If the man with the machete is seen, residents should immediately call 911 and try to provide a detailed description of the man, “including any vehicle description and license plate information.”
Anyone with information as to the identity or whereabouts of the man or who has been a witness to one of the armed robberies should contact detectives at (312) 746-7394.
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