Chicago’s Chinatown community has been placed on high alert after local authorities monitored a string of armed robberies in the neighborhood that occurred throughout the past two months.
Chicago police warned Chinatown residents to watch out for a group of five men that has robbed at least nine people during overnight hours.
According to authorities, the men are armed and conduct their robberies quickly between 10 p.m. and 2 a.m.
The group would reportedly drive around in a white or silver SUV or sedan before hopping out of their vehicle to approach their victims, who are then threatened to surrender their wallets, purses and phones.
The robberies started with two incidents on May 25 and have since continued through July, with the most recent occurring on the 19th.
A private video surveillance system that local businesses placed to fight crime has caught a few of the robberies on film.
The nine recorded incidents are as follows:
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2300 block of South Princeton Ave. on July 19 at 11:01 p.m.
2300 block of South Wentworth Ave. on July 16 at 1:10 a.m.
200 block of West 23rd St. on July 16 at 1:13 a.m.
1900 block of South Louie Parkway on July 3 at 10:20 p.m.
1900 block of South Tom Parkway on July 2 at 12:13 a.m.
2300 block of South Wentworth Ave. on June 22 at 2:11 a.m.
2300 block of South Wentworth Ave. on June 17 between 12:30 a.m. and 12:45 a.m.
2200 block of South Wentworth Ave. on May 25 at 1:04 a.m.
200 block of West 22nd Pl. on May 25 at 1:02 a.m.
Authorities are reminding the public to be vigilant and are urging victims to remain calm and surrender their valuables to the attackers to avoid physical harm. Victims are also urged to memorize any identifiable characteristics of the robbers that the police can use in their investigation.
Some offenders have also been found to use flyers as a distraction by placing them on top of cell phones before taking the flyers with the phones underneath them.
Anyone with useful information on the robberies is urged to call local investigators at (312) 747-8384.