Lincoln Park victims beaten by robbers

August 2, 2009 (CHICAGO) Four robberies occurred between Thursday and Saturday, and all of the incidents happened within blocks of each other.

According to police, all of the victims were males in their 20s who were working by themselves in the Lincoln Park neighborhood in the early morning hours. Authorities say no weapons were used and that all of the victims were severely beaten to the point that they had to be hospitalized. One of those victims remained hospitalized in stable condition Sunday evening.

During the day, residents in Lincoln Park are comfortable moving about on the streets.

"I feel safe. I've always felt safe in the whole area itself. I've never had problems," said area resident Brooke Wilson.

However, police are warning residents to be aware of the surroundings and to never walk alone at night, especially after four men were victims of robberies in a 48-hour period.

"He had just walked home a friend and was walking to his place, and that's when he got attacked. So, they're just looking for people walking by themselves," Sgt. Tim Kuzinski of the Chicago Police Department said.

The first attack took place at 2 a.m. Thursday in the 600 block of Fullerton. Five minutes later, another man was robbed and beat up in the 2100 block of North Stockton. Then, at 3 a.m. Saturday, another victim was robbed on North Cleveland. One half-hour later, a fourth victim was beaten and robbed in the 300 block of West Webster.

"[They] come from behind and get their attention. Most of the victims have said they heard footsteps coming and then someone [saying], 'Hey you.' As soon as they turn around, the first thing they see is a fist that hits them," Kuzinski said.

Police say the victims did the right thing by giving up their wallets and cell phones.

Authorities say they are beefing up patrol in the Lincoln Park area, which was welcome news to some residents.

"We do not have good police protection," one area resident told ABC7 Chicago.

Police are passing out community alerts. Investigators say they are looking for more than one offender, and because each of the victims was approached from behind and beaten right away, police were not able to get good facial description of the offenders.

Anyone with information is asked to call Area 3 police headquarters.

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