Chicago police released the man they labeled a “person of interest” in a string of Lincoln Park muggings.
A Cook County assistant state's attorney did not find sufficient evidence to charge the West Side gang member in connection with the spate of robberies that have plagued late-night strollers in the lakefront neighborhood.
Police did not reveal the man's identity, but he resembled a police sketch. A concerned citizen tipped off the cops to the man's whereabouts based on the sketch.
Officials with the police department hoped that the arrest would lead to some information about the brutal muggings that have left a handful of young men beaten and bruised and a few others scared.
"These guys are vicious and cruel. They don't just rob and hurt," said Supt. Jody Weis
, Chicago Police Department. "Like I said, we're doing everything we can to catch them and I'm confident we will."
Each of the attacks follow a similar pattern. A group of attackers, believed to be four men, sneak up on unsuspecting victims and begin whispering and trying to get the person's attention. When the victim turns around, they're usually greeted with a fist.
One particulary brutal attack sent one man to the hospital with a shattered jaw.
Police will continue to search for the suspects and maintain a larger police presence in the Lincoln Park and Lakeview neighborhoods.
Meanwhile another man was mugged last night in the northern neighborhood of Rogers Park. Police do not believe this mugging, where a 23-year-old man was stopped by two people carrying a gun, was linked to previous attacks, according to Chicago Police News Affairs Officer Amina Greer. The two armed attackers shot the man when he didn't respond to their demands and took his wallet.
Published at 6:33 AM CDT on Aug 11, 2009