Chicago smash-and-grab 'ringleader' charged in Gold Coast Burberry burglaries, CPD says

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Chicago police announced Tuesday the arrest of the alleged ringleader of a series of high-profile smash-and-grab burglaries.

Officials said that suspect was the head of an organization that worked in teams of five or six thieves. Their crime wave lasted months and was described by authorities as prolific.

RELATED | Chicago Burberry, Moose Knuckles stores hit by thieves in early morning burglaries, CPD says

Tacarre Harper, 27, of Maywood, has been charged with nine felony counts of burglary in connection with a string of overnight smash-and-grab thefts between November and January, including two in the same week at the Burberry store on Michigan Avenue last month.

Police declined to say exactly how they identified Harper, but said he was seen on video at the some of the crime scenes.

RELATED | Burberry Michigan Ave. store burglarized for 2nd time this week, Chicago police say

Police said Harper is also believed to be responsible for dozens of other burglaries of liquor, electronics, and clothing stores in Chicago and the suburbs. Investigators are currently working to identify and arrest numerous alleged accomplices.

"We are not just going to let you get away with these crimes," Chicago Police Supt. David Brown said. "Chicago is not a lawless city, and you will be brought to justice."

"We're committed to working together to ensure that criminals don't have the opportunity to continue to commit crimes with impunity," said Kimberly Bares, president and CEO of the Magnificent Mile Association.

Harper is being held on $200,000 bond. At the time of his arrest, he had four outstanding warrants, all for burglary.

Copyright © 2022 WLS-TV. All Rights Reserved.