4 charged for at least 50 armed robberies this week on NW Side
CHICAGO (WLS) -- Startling new video shows a woman being robbed at gunpoint on the North Side Wednesday as she walked her dog. This, as Chicago police announced charges against four suspects involved in a series of armed robberies with the same MO.
Diana DeJacimo was simply strolling down the Lincoln Park sidewalk with her dog when an SUV pulls up. In an instant, she had a gun in her face.
Surveillance video shows the armed suspect approach the woman with a gun before running off with her purse near Wayne and Webster in the Lincoln Park neighborhood around 11:15 a.m. Wednesday.
Staring down the barrel of a gun, DeJacamo said she was too stunned to be scared at first.
"Then when he pointed at the dog, I was like "ok... whatever you want, take it," she said.
The entire exchange lasts just 11 seconds.
"He just grabbed my purse and ran. I just thought, 'Ok, I just got away with my life and my dog's life,'" DeJacamo said.
As her attacker sprinted away, DeJacamo watched him rifle through her purse and toss it.
What she didn't see was what surveillance cameras caught as the SUV circled the block, two guys jumping out, and then speeding off in her Jeep Cherokee.
"So I walk over and I pick up my purse and my phone and wallet are still in there. It wasn't until like 15 minutes later that I realized that they were after my car key," DeJacimo said.
"A kid was shot at point blank range a block from here in May," said Michael Walker, DeJacamo's son-in-law who lives nearby.
The exact same surveillance cameras at Webster and North Wayne captured a gunman shooting and robbing Dakotah Earley seven months ago.
The 24-year-old culinary school graduate spent weeks fighting for his life, and lost part of his leg.
DeJacamo has already moved out of Chicago because of crime. Now her daughter and son-in-law whom she was visiting in Lincoln Park may do the same.
"We are desperate. We are taxpayers who care about the city and want to stay in Chicago, and we're throwing up our hands," Walker said.
Wednesday morning's robbery happened roughly the same time CPD announced they had charged four suspects they said are responsible for at least four of the 50 armed robberies this week reported across the Northwest Side.
"These armed robberies occurred in three separate neighborhoods including, North Center and Bucktown," CPD Superintendent David Brown said during the press conference.
So far, police have not linked this latest attack to any others.
Earlier this week, Chicago police issued a community alert linking 50 robberies across the city. However, the superintendent said there's a strong likelihood the suspects are responsible for dozens more, as these armed robberies are becoming more common across the city.
WATCH | Chicago police announce 4 arrests in recent armed robberies
The suspects are charged in four armed robberies in the Budlong Woods, North Center and Bucktown neighborhoods, Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown said.
The suspects, 19-year-old Deshaun McGraw, 20-year-old Marquise Green, 20-year-old Marcus Carter and 21-year-old Marchelo Hicks, have each been charged with four counts of armed robbery with a firearm, four counts of aggravated robbery and four counts of robbery. Carter, Hicks and Green were charged with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.
The first two robberies the suspects were charged in occurred Monday at 3:15-3:18 a.m. in the 2400-block of West Berwyn Avenue and 4300-block of North Leavitt Street.
Two other robberies occurred between 10:26-10:39 a.m. in the 2100-block of North Claremont Avenue and the 4100-block of North Wolcott Avenue.
In each of the robberies, Brown said three of the suspects approached the victims while they were walking by themselves or in a parked car, Brown said. The suspects then demanded property from the victims before going through their pockets and cars before fleeing.
"There's a great disregard for people that's occurring with these crimes," Brown said. "That morning we had a report of a woman who was pistol whipped."
Police said the four suspects were located by officers on Monday in traffic, but when police identified themselves, they fled, crashing into a Streets and Sanitation truck near Winnemac Avenue and Oakley Avenue, which immediately burstinto flames. They then fled on foot and were located the four suspects in a garage in the 5100-block of North Oakley Avenue.
Police said they also recovered three weapons.
Police are also investigating their possible connection to nearly 50 other incidents reported on Northwest Side this week.
"I think neighbors across the city are pleased that there's been some accountability here and I'm thankful to neighbors in the 40th Ward that helped lead to that apprehension," said 40th Ward Alderman Andrew Vasquez.
Superintendent Brown said the suspects don't have a notable criminal history but is urging the justice system to not let them out on bond.
"It's really important that this hard work is not undone by our courts not taking this serious," Brown said. This is a danger to the community. These people are dangerous."
A judge denied bail to both Carter and Hicks. Their next court date will be December 21. McGraw and Green are expected in bond court Thursday at noon.
"We believe strongly in personal responsibility, regardless of your age you should be held accountable for the crimes you commit particularly to violent crimes like these," Brown added.