A violent armed robbery Sunday afternoon in Lakeview that was caught on surveillance video has left neighbors frightened and frustrated.
Just before 3 p.m. Sunday in the 2900 block of North Seeley, a 45-year-old woman was approached by four mask-wearing suspects who pushed her to the ground and demanded her property, police say.
Police say one of the suspects brandished a gun. Neighbors say they heard the victim in the theft screaming.
The victim complied, and the suspects fled the scene, authorities say. No injuries were reported, and no one is currently in custody, according to police.
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“I want my kid to ride a bike down the street,” one resident said, of the violence see has seen recently in her neighborhood. “I want them to be in the front yard without worrying about what’s gonna happen in the middle of the day. It’s not nine at night. This is 3 p.m. Our kids are coming home from school.”
“It’s terrifying! It’s the middle of the day and they attacked her,” another commented.
Ald. Scott Waguespack said that he is sympathetic to the concerns of area residents, but emphasized that Chicago police have actually stepped up patrols, and said he welcomes the increased attention of residents looking for ways that they can help the situation.
“I think they have to stick it out,” he said. “They really need to get more involved, more focused on what’s happening on the street every day of the week.”
During a press conference on public safety Tuesday, the Chicago Police Department said that "detectives have created a crime pattern with these offenders," but that victims have a difficult time making any sort of identification based on the fact that the suspects wear masks.
"So we're asking for the public to step forward and help us identify these individuals," the department said.
Resident Marna Goldwin said that neighbors are willing to do their part, but is also calling for more effective actions from leadership at both the city and police department level.
“We’re willing to step up in any way we can, but we haven’t seen that leadership from officials,” she said. “We also need guidance as to what we should be doing to keep this neighborhood as safe as possible.”
Waguespack said that while he’s satisfied with the efforts of police, he insisted that other individuals within the sphere of law need to step up, including the State’s Attorney’s Office and the Cook County judicial system.
“We can’t just rely on police to do the work. It’s a three-legged stool,” he said. “Police, prosecutors and judges. Right now, I think everyone knows we’re on one leg of the stool: police. The other two portions aren’t working.”