Thieves Snag $20,000 in Goods From Oak Street Store

Someone broke into Milani Boutique late Tuesday night

A high-end children’s clothing store on Chicago's near north side was burglarized Tuesday night.

Someone forced their way through the front door of Milani Boutique, located at 65 E. Oak St., at about 11:15 p.m., police said.

An estimated $20,000 worth of merchandise was stolen in the heist.

Owner Joe Batko is frustrated by this latest burglary because it's the third time the store has been targeted in the past year.

"Again and again this neighborhood is attracting the wrong customers, the wrong people, unfortunately," Batko said. "I've been here 22 years and the last couple years it's the worst."

The shop specializes in children’s clothing from designer brands such as Armani, Dior and Dolce & Gabbana.

The thieves smashed through the ground level glass door, ran upstairs and shattered a second glass door to get inside store.

Batko has shared surveillance video with investigators, but other retailers in the neighborhood are also concerned about security.

"There hasn't been security at nighttime ... we have to set an alarm here or something," Oak Street business owner Chatto Wright said.

An alarm and video cameras weren't enough of a deterrent to stop an unsolved burglary two months ago right around the corner at Eves St Lauren. The display window was smashed with a baseball bat and several hundred thousand dollars of handbags, shoes and jewelry taken.

"The people who run their businesses here are nice, respectable people," area resident Brian Chapin said. "To have things like that happen, it's just really concerning."

The Oak Street Council is working closely with 18th District police to try to prevent these types of crimes.

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